Blackpool's seagulls are the boldest in Britain - and will stop at nothing to get their beaks on your chips

Maritime menaces - or tragically misunderstood?

Wednesday, 2nd June 2021, 12:11 pm
Updated Wednesday, 2nd June 2021, 12:16 pm
Blackpool seagulls have been ranked the worst in the country for food-stealing
Blackpool seagulls have been ranked the worst in the country for food-stealing

No British bird has ignited such fierce debate as the seagull, commonly spotted in every coastal town in the country, loud, fearless, and seemingly always hungry.

And it’s not fish these seaside birds are craving, but pastries, pies, and chip shop chips fresh from the fryer. Much like the country’s human population, Britain’s gulls are true fast food aficionados.

And Blackpool’s birds in particular will stop at nothing to fill their bellies with all the fatty, salty foods humans crave.

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New research by vehicle sun blind specialists Car Shades has revealed more than half of Brits have experienced a seagull attack in seaside tourist destinations across the UK, with Blackpool ranking number one for gull swooping and food stealing.

One in four of the 1,640 Brits surveyed experienced a seagull attack at Blackpool beach, followed closely by Scarborough at 17 per cent and Whitby at 16 per cent.

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Steve Giles, managing director at Car Shades, said: “If the weather picks up there is no doubt, we’ll be driving to the seaside towns as a holiday alternative.

“Our survey shows just how common these seagull attacks can be. Some incidents are actually quite comical and can be laughed off, but others can cause serious financial damages and heartache, the last thing you need when we’ve all waited so long for a mini break.”

Blackpool Council urges residents and tourists to refrain from feeding them. Information about seagull-proof bin bags can be found on the Council's website.According to the survey, the most popular targets for unruly seagulls were:

Fish and chips – 22%

Ice cream – 15%

Sunglasses – 12%

Ice lollies – 11%

Scarves – 10%

Hats – 9%

Headphones – 8%

Handbags – 6%

Car Keys – 5%

Dogs – 2%