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Last Updated: Thursday, 11 May 2006, 16:25 GMT 17:25 UK
MSP seeks action on town's gulls
A seagull
Seagulls are a continued problem in the town centre, the MSP said
An MSP has issued a call for action to tackle Dumfries' long standing problems with seagulls.

Local Labour politician Dr Elaine Murray wants to see the publication of updated guidance to authorities on how to address the issue.

She said that the town suffered serious problems with people being attacked by gulls and the mess the birds make.

Now the MSP wants to see action taken on recommendations made in a research project published on the issue.

Dr Murray said the time was right for something to be done.

"We are getting to the nesting season," she said.

The way to tackle any problem is to look at how we dispose our rubbish
RSPB spokesman

"We know that when the chicks are around the seagulls do become particularly aggressive.

"Quite often there are instances of people getting attacked and so on."

She said councils needed guidance on how to tackle the problems.

As well as the attacks on people she highlighted the issue of rubbish bags being ripped open by gulls.

"That is not good for tourism," she said.

'Coastal towns'

"We don't want visitors to be seeing that sort of mess when they come to visit us."

A spokesman for the RSPB said the best ways to tackle any problems were to stop the birds nesting on roofs and cut down their food sources.

He said: "There have been seagulls in Dumfries for hundreds of years They are a natural part of the landscape in Dumfries and other coastal towns.

"We appreciate that they can become a nuisance where they build up in numbers.

"The biggest thing is not to leave food out for them. The way to tackle any problem is to look at how we dispose our rubbish."

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