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Last Updated: Thursday, 18 May 2006, 08:10 GMT 09:10 UK
City planning to oil seagull eggs
The RSPB said there were options other than oiling
Aberdeen City Council wants to oil seagull eggs in an attempt bid to reduce bird numbers.

The council has applied for a licence from the Scottish Executive to carry out a trial period of oiling eggs.

This involves dipping them in a light mineral oil, which sterilises the eggs. The gulls sit on the eggs until they eventually move on.

The move follows a record number of complaints about gulls last year - rising to 249 from 184 previously.

The trial would last three years.

However, RSPB Scotland said there were other options, such as cleaner streets.

Many of the complaints were of gulls swooping to take food from people in the city centre.

Should bird eggs be oiled to cut Aberdeen's seagull population?

A report recommending the action plan goes to the environment and infrastructure committee next Tuesday.

However, an RSPB Scotland spokesperson said: "They are allowed to apply to control gulls for reasons including if it's to protect human health.

"We think it's not the best means of trying to control them."

The spokesperson said the RSPB had suggested using wiring to prevent gulls nesting on flat roofs and more intense street cleaning.

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22 Mar 06 |  Scotland

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