It is that time of year again and the Hereford BID has been working behind the scenes to ensure partners such as BBLP, Council and Waste Management Services are all working together to ensure business rubbish bags are sealed and protected against gulls - this can be achieved by either asking the Council for a bag or if you are not one of their commercial waste customers, the BID will let you have one for free, donated by Hereford Council to support BID businesses!
Hereford Council currently run an egg removal program which helps break the breeding cycle. The egg and nest removal service runs from April/May to August/September every year, at two-weekly intervals. At present, this service is free to all, provided that the roof is accessible, roof permission is granted in writing, and the work can be done in less than one hour. You can report a nest by completing THIS contact form on the Herefordshire Council website.
Once adult gulls start ‘dive-bombing’ they are unable to intervene as this indicates there are chicks in the nest, so we would advise you contact them as soon as you see the gulls beginning to nest. It's important to note that they are unable to touch live birds/chicks; as these are classed as wild birds. Generally, it is illegal to capture, injure or destroy any wild bird or interfere with its nest or eggs, the legislature that covers this is The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 .
You can help prevent gull activity on your property by:
- Removing any possible food sources including fallen fruit, animal feed and accessible household waste
- Keeping your rubbish in bins until the day of collection wherever practical
- Making sure your bins have secured lids
- Using special bird feeders rather than putting food on the floor
- Not feeding your dogs and cats outdoors
- Picking up and disposing of any litter outside your property
- Clearing any undergrowth from your garden to remove possible nesting places.
- Not putting any meats, bread or cooked food on a compost heap as this will attract vermin into your garden. Where possible secure fine grade wire meshing around and underneath your compost heap.
- Commercial properties should keep the streets at the front and back of the premise free of litter and black rubbish bags
If you want to feed birds without encouraging gulls:
- Only put out bird food from November to May, as there is nearly always enough natural food available the rest of the year
- Put food in wire baskets or under a roofed bird table so that only small birds can get it
- Put out small amounts of food frequently rather than large amounts at a time
- Specialist companies can protect your building from gulls by installing wires or spikes on chimney pots and other rooftop features.