Is it the weather that is making the people of Brighton miserable? The unapologetic and often outrageous behaviour of bankers or politicians? Fear of an imminent terrorist attack? No, it’s seagulls.
At least that is the feeling I, and many others around Brighton have, with the seagulls’ anti-social behavior fast making them a figure of hate.
Whilst I’m not sure if the seagulls in Brighton have always behaved this way, it has recently become apparent to me that they have an arrogance, and at times hateful manner about them, which is not often seen in other birds.
Whilst birds like pigeons will pester passers by for pieces of discarded bread, it is not uncommon to hear stories of people having entire meals taken from them by seagulls; with one girl recently telling me she had a whole battered sausage snatched from her, splattering mayonnaise all over her face.
Whilst most of us just laugh stories like this off, there are a growing number of people who are sick of their behavior, which has led to a new concept: gull rage.
This concept was summed up perfectly by a tourist bus driver in Brighton who said, “A seagull swooped on a friend of mine the other day to grab a burger out of his hand, so he caught the bird by the throat and gave it a right fright. The seagulls are getting out of control. Something has to be done.”
In addition to stealing food, I have come to realize that they often defecate on people differently to other birds too.
Whilst most people can expect to have the odd pigeon dropping fall on them, they wouldn’t expect a pigeon to target them, and drop down on them, squawking like an eagle, before releasing a dropping intended for them. Well that’s what a seagull did to me, leaving me in disbelief, and slightly disturbed.
Although I’m not suggesting we kill all the seagulls, it may be time for the people of Brighton to stop viewing the seagulls’ behavior in such a light-hearted way, and feeding them so much, which in my opinion is just fuelling their egos.