Residents demand help as plague of bloodthirsty seagulls begin to eat pigeons

Killer seagulls are terrorising the waterways of London and have been doing so since the start of the coronavirus lockdown, say local residents.

The bloodthirsty predators have been attacking and gorging on pigeons and rats along the capital’s canals as they search for new ingredients to their diet.

The attacks by the sea birds have become more widespread and more vicious over the past couple of years, triggered by reduced human activity, which means they have to find alternative sources of food, reports the Mirror.

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And residents have been shocked by how brutal the seagulls have been in hunting down flocks of pigeons, in particular, targeting the smallest birds and knocking them out with a swift peck to the head before carting them off to eat.

Rats have even been dragged from the water and eaten, and such has been the ferocity of their attacks that they are known as “murder gulls” by residents.

Video footage of a seagull attacking a pigeon in Lisson Grove, north London, showed the bigger bird biting the torso of the pigeon as it desperately struggled to escape.

“Apparently it started in lockdown when they couldn’t get any food,” said a man who lives on moorings where that incident happened.

“We call them murder gulls. They go amongst the pigeons and pick off the stupidest ones and eat them alive, it’s awful. I’ve even seen them get hold of rats.”

It’s not just the UK that has seen a rise in seagull attacks, they are just as prevalent in Italy, too.

During the coronavirus lockdowns of 2020 and 2021, seagulls in Rome returned to their natural role as predators – hunting down rats, pigeons and other smaller birds.

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Eating pigeons and rats is nothing new for the seagulls, but they usually peck at dead animals in the form of roadkill. But since the reduction of human activity on busy city streets, the gulls have now got a taste for blood.

A London resident added: “Possibly lack of food because of lockdown has driven them to this. Now they seem to have got a proper taste for pigeons.

“I see the gulls every day killing and eating pigeons. No-one has seen this behaviour pre-Covid, but now it is a regular occurrence.”


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