Bath Chronicle

Gulls, swap rooftops for Cor­nish clifftops!

- Birdwatching · Hobbies · Torquay United F.C. · Bath · Rick Stein

Bath’s gull prob­lem is peren­nial. Liv­ing in Lower Old­field Park, our three-storey houses pro­vide the per­fect “clifftop” nest­ing sites with the sweep across the rail lines and St James’ Ceme­tery.

We dread the sight of the sen­try gulls who ar­rive a month be­fore nest­ing; guard­ing “their” roof from pre­vi­ous years.

They have a well-or­gan­ised so­cial net­work – with a posse ar­riv­ing im­me­di­ately if they squawk: “Dan­ger.”

I have to keep a me­tal colan­der near the wash­ing line to grab if they swoop on us when they are nest­ing.

Comic – but not funny! We are not el­i­gi­ble for help from the coun­cil scheme as ac­cess to the roof re­quires scaf­fold­ing.

Two years ago we got a builder to re­pair the nest-dam­aged chim­ney which was caus­ing a damp ceil­ing.

The job cost less than £100 – but the scaf­fold­ing for one wall cost £800. No joke when you are OAPS.

This light-hearted of­fer­ing in­cludes some pos­i­tive sugges­tions!

Cor­nish Di­as­pora (or The Gulls of Bath, if you pre­fer) Gull-spot­ting in Corn­wall, we only saw five, as they’ve moved in their thou­sands to Bath.

At four in the morn­ing we just want to snore, but their screech­ing and squalling is hard to ig­nore; we re­ally have had quite enough. The clock says four-thirty, and we’ve reached the stage, where we’re fret­ting and fum­ing, and boil­ing with rage, as we lie here ad­mit­ting, that it would be fun, to aim at the chim­ney, with a very large gun. Dear ‘An­gry of Bath’ is de­mand­ing a cull.

He won’t be con­tent till we’ve killed the last gull.

The city’s bird-lovers say: No – we must strive to dis­cover a food to re­duce their sex drive. The greedy say:

Gull pie, cooked in white wine; If you want a good recipe: write to Rick Stein.

But lis­ten you bird-brains – you don’t have to die wrapped up in short-pas­try, and served as gull pie. You could move back to Corn­wall, nest on the cliffs, glide like seaea­gles, swoop like the swifts. Eat gleam­ing fish, as you fol­low the boats, surf-ride the waves, or sim­ply… just float.

So we’re send­ing this post­card, we queued up to sign. Corn­wall is lovely. The weather is fine.

You might think this mean, but we think it’s fair: Please move back to Corn­wall. We wish you were there! Misha Carder Bath

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