A few nice news live images I found:
Britain’s number one pest
Image by brizzle born and bred
They’re noisy, filthy, violent… and they’re moving into a street near you. No, not gangs of teenagers, but the seagulls invading Britain’s inland towns by their thousands.
En masse, the ear-splitting noise of them all shrieking at once, not to mention the mess their excrement makes of rooftops, pavements, cars, and windows, or the damage they do to buildings, and a flock of seagulls is an even more fearsome prospect.
Living by the seaside must be lovely, having fish and chips on the beach while watching the sun set on the ocean. Right?
Not so for residents of the Scottish seaside town of Newhaven, near Edinburgh, where residents are being attacked by increasingly violent seagulls.
These dive-bombing birds have been harrassing the Scottish townfolk to such a degree, they have begged local authorities and numerous action groups to organise a cull.
Their requests have all been rebuffed due to current legislation making such a move ‘extremely difficult’.
One terrified resident, Ellen Johnston, 57, explained how it affects her life: ‘I never leave the house without an umbrella and you can feel them bouncing off.
At the moment one of their young has fallen off the roof, and we are getting attacked even more. They grab your hair and swoop so close.’
Although the birds normally attack in pairs, there has been a sighting of five seagulls attacking just one victim.
A spokesperson for Edinburgh City Council responded saying: ‘The city provides advice to residents about how to deter gulls from nesting on their properties and offers pest control services on a commercial basis.’
Residents have likened their treatment by these aggressive birds to Alfred Hitchcock’s 1963 thriller The Birds starring Tippi Hedren.
Bristol’s number one pest: Council sets aside extra £200,000 to tackle city’s gull problem.
ATTACKING members of the public, stealing food and holding up building work are just a few of the reasons why seagulls are fast becoming Bristol’s number one pest.
And it seems the city council is also at its wits end with the pesky birds, as it has allocated £200,000 to new measures to keep gulls in the city at bay using techniques such as hawks and falcons.
It comes after violent and aggressive seagulls in Cornwall made national headlines for pecking a small dog to death. But a Bristol gull expert has claimed urban gulls are a much bigger problem – and are breeding at an uncontrollable rate.
There are more than 2,500 pairs of breeding gulls in Bristol, and the population is thought to be rising at a rate of around 20 per cent a year.
The council is embarking on a 10 year city-wide egg replacement programme. But despite initial claims that this was the only "viable" option to try and control the problem, Bristol gull expert Peter Rock says the money would be better spent on research.
Mr Rock conducts his own gull research by attaching rings to their feet to monitor their behaviour. He said: "The council will be wasting their money with any measures involving birds of prey. There are peregrine falcons nesting around Bristol anyway, and that doesn’t affect the gulls at all.
"We have really got to get to grips with what is going on with these birds. But the current measures being taken will not work in the long term. All they do is move the problem around.
"Urban gulls are breeding so successfully and we must monitor their behaviour to try and understand why – in the wild the number of gulls is dwindling, but it an urban environment they are thriving.
"Once we understand their habits and behaviour, we can come up with a more long term solution to help the problem."
And the problem in Bristol was highlight over the weekend, with this year’s Harbourside Festival attracting hundreds of the unwanted visitors.
Dianne Smyth visits the festival every year from her home in Taunton, but said she felt seagulls had become a real issue at this year’s event.
She told the Bristol Post: "As usual, it was a wonderful event with a lovely atmosphere. However, there was one thing that slightly ruined it for us this year- seagulls.
"As we have done in the past, we bought some food from one of the many stalls around and sat with our feet dangling over the harbour to enjoy it. We had been there for no more than a few moments before a huge seagull took a swoop at Dave, my husband. He didn’t hurt him but seagulls are large birds and had he not seen it coming he could have easily been knocked into the water."
A Bristol City Council spokesperson said there was £200,000 available to explore techniques to control gulls: "Bristol City Council has an ongoing 10-year management programme aimed at reducing the number of gulls by replacing the gulls’ eggs with substitute ones. This is strictly controlled by Natural England licence conditions.
"Results from a survey undertaken by the Animal and Plant Health Agency have showed that the programme has held off any significant increases in the gull population and there has been a slight decrease in the number of breeding pairs.
"There are no quick fixes to the gull issue and there are limitations to what action we can take due to licence conditions, but Bristol City Council is one of the few local authorities taking such action.
"We have £200,000 available for a wider gull programme which explores the use of other techniques, such as netting and using hawks and falcons, but we will only use this funding for the most cost-effective and successful methods."
2010 Gunmen shooting dead seagulls in their dozens.
Seagulls across Sussex are being shot and killed in their dozens. Bird protection groups have offered a £5,000 reward to catch the gunmen responsible for the deaths of up to 50 gulls in a string of attacks across the county in the last fortnight.
The birds are being cruelly shot down from rooftops but in some cases the maimed birds are not dying instantly but are plummeting from rooftops and then dying slow, painful deaths.
The National Seagull Rescue and Protection (NSRP) campaign has had to be called out to care for many of the injured birds.
In the last week the charity has been called in to care for two birds attacked in Hove and another one Brighton, one in Seaford, plus nine in Eastbourne.
Investigators believe the same people are repeatedly shooting at birds. Residents in the Hazlewood Avenue area of Eastbourne have reporting finding about 40 dead gulls in the last two weeks alone.
All 11 species of seagull found in Britain, including the most commonly seen herring gulls, are protected species under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.
Shooting a seagull is a criminal offence which carries a maximum sentence of six months in jail or a £20,000 fine.
Anyone who lives anywhere near these noisy vermin will understand why someone could be driven to shooting them. Everyone is entitled to the peaceful enjoyment of their home.
2015 – A seagull has been poisoned and dumped in a police station yard in an apparent backlash against the birds following a recent spate of gull attacks.
Police and the RSPCA launched an investigation into the “senseless” poisoning in the seaside town of Bridport, Dorset.
It comes after David Cameron said he wanted to start a “big conversation” about an increase in attacks by the aggressive birds on people and pets.
Seagulls killed a dog in Newquay, Cornwall last week, leaving what was described as a sight “like a murder scene”, while a tortoise was pecked to death in nearby Liskeard.
MPs were prompted to call for a change in the law which would allow the protected status of the birds to be axed in order to able to control their population in urban areas.
2002 – A pensioner died after being attacked by seagulls in his garden. As the terror of overprotective gulls returns all round the UK, people are asking what can be done about them.
It’s that time of year again when seagulls living in towns and cities can become very aggressive, with potentially dreadful consequences.
The tragic news that Wilfred Roby, an 80-year-old retired ambulance driver from Anglesey, died from a heart attack after being attacked by gulls in his back garden will surprise no-one who has been the victim of such an attack.
Mr Roby’s death is the most extreme case in recent times, although last year there were reports of a woman being nearly "scalped" by the birds. Several dogs and cats have been killed by seagulls – actually herring gulls – which become over-protective of their young who are now leaving the nests.
And there’s not much that can be done about it.
Emily Swift-Jones says her garden, in Brighton, has been made a no-go area for her boyfriend. The gulls which are nesting on the flat roof of an extension at the back of their house are content to let Emily into the garden, but have swooped down on her boyfriend and her dog.
"He says that the birds seem OK when you’re looking at them from a distance, but that when they are swooping down on you, and the beak is about a foot away, it’s a different matter. That’s when you see Man Running Into House."
Another reader, John Shaw, from Liverpool, believes he was targeted for special attention by one gull in the city centre.
"Running down a street, wearing T-shirt and shorts, I was dive-bombed," he says. "Not content with one pass, it made a further two attacks. Worse was to come. On my return some 30 minutes later, the bird obviously recognised me, and made a further three swoops to scare me off. I can only presume that my different attire marked me out as different from the usual lunchtime pedestrians."
Similar tales come from Gwynedd, Dundee, Edinburgh, Bristol, Berwick, even central London where last year postal deliveries to one row of mews houses had to be suspended because the gulls ruled the roost.
So what can be done? The answer it seems is not much. It is against the law to kill seagulls or interfere with their nests, under the Wildlife and Countryside Act.
If gulls pose a particular threat to health or safety, councils can conduct a cull – usually by shooting or poisoning. But few authorities take advantage of this right, as it tends to be an unpopular step.
Andy South, of the RSPB, expressed sympathy for Mr Roby and his family, and for anyone who was being attacked by gulls.
"Inevitably all the gulls are doing is protecting their own young, which is the same as any human would do. They are just being overprotective of their territory," he says.
In this period when birds can get aggressive, he says the best answer is for people to be patient.
"It’s a relatively short-lived process, only about three to four weeks. What we would suggest is if people can be patient until the end of the breeding season, and once the young have flown the nest, then people should try to use preventative measures to stop them nesting in the same place, because otherwise they will do."
Those measures include putting down chicken wire to stop the birds from landing and thus preventing nesting.
But if you think the problem will just go away and the same won’t happen next year, think again.
Gulls can live for 40 years, Andy South says, and start breeding when they are three. If they have nested successfully in one place, that is where they will try to nest again.
And in any case, the problem is getting worse. Urban seagulls are increasing at 7% a year.
"In seaside towns we have made their lives a bit easier. There have been changes to cliff-top habitats and gulls have spotted chimney pots as their next best bet.
"From there, they get good visibility, they are safe from other predators, and there are food sources around. In a sense you can’t blame them."
Discarded take-aways are the infamous food source, but in places such as Brighton where the rubbish is still collected in black plastic bags, seagulls think of dustbin day as an excuse for a feast, pecking bags open and leaving waste strewn over the road.
For reasons that no-one quite knows, the population of herring gulls, which are such an integral part of the seaside sights and sounds, has dropped by 40% in the past 40 years.
In the UK, the term usually means herring gulls.
They can live until they are 40.
It is illegal to kill them, or disturb their nests or eggs (except under licence)
Are seagulls really aggressive? Have you ever been attacked by one?
decisions decisions, 2007
Image by torbakhopper
so i tried my best to watch "an inconvenient truth" last night.
but i kept getting LOST in the blizzard of mysteriously vague and barely visible "facts"
for instance, camera pans in on stratified ice melting glacier. gore’s comedic overvoice drolling, "you can see each ice layer for each year", (but there is no scale so you can’t tell if the layers are ten feet thick, five feet thick, one foot thick? then he says, "we can test ice core samples backwards of 650,000 years"
well, if you do the basic math calculations, allotting one foot per year layer, we would have to have drilled over 123 miles into the earth’s surface
you can keep breaking it down if you’d like (changing the ice core layering numbers, but the point, i guess, is that when "we" have drilled, the ridiculously and all time farthest depth is less than 9 miles) so keep that in mind as you try to make up the facts to match al gore’s proposal
unfortunately, even dumbed down wikipedia adds some contradictions to al’s movie version: "The length of the record depends on the depth of the ice core and varies from a few years up to 800 kyr for the EPICA core. The time resolution (i.e. the shortest time period which can be accurately distinguished) depends on the amount of annual snowfall, and reduces with depth as the ice compacts under the weight of layers accumulating on top of it. Upper layers of ice in a core correspond to a single year or sometimes a single season. Deeper into the ice the layers thin and annual layers become indistinguishable." hmmmm. now that’s really different than the info he was saying. and frankly i think he’s not just full of shit, so are all the people who just jump into junk science because it’s sexy and contemporary. and hey, that IS ANY OF YOU who are just starting to crumble under the repetition of media catch phrases. but don’t blame yourselves or get angry at new information. i know, who has the time to cross reference anything anymore?
there is a startlingly good scene in the book Brave New World where one of the lead characters is told by one of the world leaders that science is bunk. he cries out, "but it’s the backbone of our society". the world leader then asks him what he really knows about science. beyond the jargan and propaganda, what does he really know of true, hard science? and he knows nothing and is ashamed and realizes that he really only knows stories about science, not true science
last night, i watched this movie with someone who kind of belives the same things as helmholtz watson (the dashing, over-intelligent outcast/untouchable… that’s right, the unavoidable corporate caste system — c’mon, you knew there was a reason that the xians and the islams are being pitted against each other, right?!).
periodically, i would stop the movie after one of al gore’s wordy explanations and say, "what does that mean? what did he just say?" not once could my compadre actually relay back the info that was said. so i would, verbatim and then i would ask again, "what does that mean?" but it was idiotic gibberish and had no meaning at all
and way too much of the movie is just sheer "clean up" propoganda. and whose pocket do you think al is in?
not sure if y’all get it but the war btwn the energy cartels and the new corporates is raging pretty damn fiercely in this economic pilot project we fondly call the united states
gore represents globalism and global views. bush is pretending to represent nationalism and nationalistic views (though we know that isn’t true), but he is also global — something like the patriot act (which deals heavily with online internet business, black market and tax evasion issues) would NEVER have passed in this county if he wasn’t involved in globalism at the deepest level — hell, i’m gonna make a NEW WORLD ORDER shirt today to honor his father’s catch phrase
problem/reaction/solution has become the manufacturing goal of the media and corporations are wildly at war with each other. the ability to use nations as human shields or weapons is increasing. humans are becoming weapons, living weapons. once again
if we all jumped heedlessly onto the "clean up" band wagon, we might find some new enlightenment. studies show, however, that "clean up" crew mentality is very lucrative for pocket buddy corporates that "shoot pool" with the politicians and make trade outs for big pay offs. cf the fct up stats from the exxon valdeez clean up if you don’t believe me (no, really, spend ten minutes and do some personal research!!!!!)
but, back to the movie. in ONE breath he states thtat we are politically obligated and MORALLY obligated AND ETHICALLY OBLIGATED to global warming — it’s obvious that includes all of you who aren’t anarchists!!!! you’re all being called to submit and bow down. damn. the anarchist is left out of the equation, AGAIN!
can anyone else smell a fking HUGE TARIFF coming?
have you paid your annual "global warming tax" yet? your share this year is 138,000 u.s dollars. we’ve just taken it from the federal reserve. you paid for it in iraq and at the gas pumps. we burned the money. your country will soon be dancing through a delicious recession until the next bill shows up. use credit. pay later. eat filter fish. take medications. sleep less. get angry all the time. drive your car recklessly
what an entertaining culture!!!!
i think fellini did a great job of interpreting petronius. in his film fellini’s satyricon", the poet refers to us, the viewer and the students in the film as a "race of slaves"
secretly, i prefer mr.huxley’s corporate translation of the same phrase: community, stability, identity
i promise to see the whole movie. maybe several times
my favorite part so far is when he uses the invisible lift to avoid showing how current temperatures correspond with the outrageous projections — i think i even shouted out, "donkey show" when i really meant to say "dog and pony show"
people either forget or don’t know that the little organisms in the ocean that "filter" all the stuff scientists call oxygen (hahaha) that we breathe, well, they’re taking strange vacations lately and going different ways than before for reasons that are related to basic change. revegetation, pattern shifts, industrialization, toxic waste (hey, even little organisms will move away from radioactive poison once they catch on), and so many other things contribute to a different migrational period for them. and weather weapons, which have been tested and used several times within the past five years are just normal outgrowths of comic book fantasies come to life through secret laboratories that fill our cities and communities with ideas and applications, education and doctored foods. it’s not new stuff, folks. none of it
and those little organisms that make all that oxygen will stabilize into "normal" patterns again. and what about the fking whales? and the sonar project that is devastating oceanic life and has been for the past decade? you know what i’m saying? there’s just info coming to the surface that SEEMS NEW and exciting and dangerous. but it isn’t really any of that
it’s just news UNLESS you have to pay for it. then, it’s time to watch the monkeys have their boston tea party