A week-long firearms amnesty is under way in Bedfordshire and police are hoping air weapons and ball bearing guns will be handed in.
Police say they respond to around 250firearm-related incidents every year.
Acting Deputy Chief Constable Martin Stuart said many offenders are young and do not realise the dangers.
"People don't know if firearms are real or imitation and are afraid when they are spotted. Weapons can be left in our bins with no questions asked."
He said people can also call Crimestoppers anonymously with their concerns.
DCC Martin said the goal of the programme was to let the community know action was being taken on firearms and to "impress on those who might continue to labour under the misconception that carrying weapons, real or not, might add to their 'street cred' - it does not."