Gulls

(Larridae spp.)

Gulls are medium-sized to large, long winged birds, conspicous birds that often occure in large flocks. They are mostly white with grey or black back and wings but immature birds are brown and only gradually gain adult colour. These birds fly relativel slow wing beats and frequently glide or soar on motionless wings. There are six species within the UK that cause problems.

Gulls used to be associated more with coastal areas, but most of the six issue species are now found in large numbers more inland in the UK. These can cause particular issues on roofs on tall buildings where there are favourable nesting areas. During nesting season they become very territorial and will attack people near their nest.

UK Problem Gull species

Common Gull

Larus Canus

Herring Gull

Larus argentatus

Great black-backed Gull

Larus marinus

Lesser black-backed Gull

Larus fuscus

Black-headed Gull

Larus ridibundus

Kittiwake

Rissa tridactyla

Images courtesy of RSPB

Biology

Gulls can build nests alongside other gulls in colonies. Once a breeding site has been established the gulls will return year after year. They are start breeding at 5 years old and can live up to 25 years. Eggs are laid in April or May with up to three eggs being laid at two to three day intervals. Incubation in most gull species is between 28-30 days. The young will start to fly at about 10 days but will not leave the nest area until after five to six weeks. Breeding season normally finishes at the end of August / beginning of September.

Microbee solutions offered:

Exclusion netting

Proofing is always the most effective and long term solution to any bird problem. Exclusion netting can offer protection to a larger area then any of the other solutions.

Spiking

This is mainly for ledge and edge protection. These do not harm the bird but simply make the surface uncomfortable for birds to roost on.

Anti-perching wire

These work the same as spiking but are more used in low pressure infestation levels.

Parallel wire

This is an alterantive to roof netting. Orange wire is run parallel across the roof at 400mm intervals. This gap is not enough for gulls to be able to land on the roof.

Ersatz egg

An alternative when no other system is practical. Gull eggs are replaced with dummy eggs, which over time persuades gulls to seek a new breeding site.

Agrilaser

A new system that is environmentally friendly and harmess to birds. Works by emitting a green laser beam seen to the birds as an object approaching them. The system is programmed to be constantly moving so that birds cannot habituate themselves to it.

Other options available but not recommended include:
  • Scaring: Wide variety on the market including visual and audio scarring. Limited effects and only recommended as a temporary solution due to the birds being able to habituate themselves to these systems.
  • Control: Culling and trapping will only be considered once non-lethal methods are likely to fail or are impracticable or to comply with the Animal Welfare Act 2006, such as a bird being caught in netting. Only certain gull species listed on the General License under certain circumstances can be controlled under these lethal methods.
  • Cleaning and serilising services

    We can offer cleaning of bulk birdfouling and nests as well as sterilisation of the areas. Please note that due to the corrosive nature of bird fouling there may be residual stains that we would not be able to remove without damaging the surface.

    Further information

    If you would like a free quote or have any questions then please get in touch.

    You can download our client information sheet for pigeon and other pest control services here

    We use a range of products, including disinfectants and adhesives, for pigeon control. If you are concerned about any of them, please click the relevant link below to download the relevant safety data sheet

  • PX Ornikill
  • Soudal - Fix All
  • Soudal - Silirub N
  • Soudal Surface Activator