Wildlife expert blasts children who lured gull with chips

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A wildlife expert has blasted a group of children who lured a herring gull into the path of heavy traffic along Eastbourne’s seafront by throwing chips into the middle of the road.

The bird was hit by a passing car earlier this month and taken in by the Wildlife Rescue and Ambulance Service (WRAS) in Uckfield.

Once its condition was stabilised volunteers were originally concerned the gull was blinded in the incident. They now believe it is only in one eye.

Trevor Weeks of the WRAS said, “This kind of attack is a bit pointless. At the end of the day it’s a living thing they have injured.

“He’s not doing too badly thankfully, it seems as though he has lost the sight in one eye. The other one seems to be recovering. It will take some time before he completely recovers. It’s a long road from here.

“To me, if someone sees someone doing something like that they should call the police at once.”

Gulls are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. It is illegal to intentionally kill, take or injure wild birds.

A spokesman for the RSPCA said, “Sadly this kind of incident is not as unusual as we would hope and every year we deal with many cases of callous attacks on these birds.

“ Herring gulls in particular are a species of conservation concern in the UK and research has shown that overall gull populations are actually in decline.

“The RSPCA believes deterrents and non-lethal methods of control are far better at helping to reduce problems. Not feeding the gulls and disposing of rubbish properly is one thing we can all do to prevent gulls from causing a nuisance.”

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