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'It was frightening' - man attacked three times by same seagull calls for action to be taken

PUBLISHED: 12:52 07 July 2019 | UPDATED: 09:11 08 July 2019

David Cansick, 77, from Great Yarmouth, was attacked three times by the same seagull. Picture: Joseph Norton

David Cansick, 77, from Great Yarmouth, was attacked three times by the same seagull. Picture: Joseph Norton

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A 77-year-old man who was attacked three times by the same seagull said he was left horrified by the ordeal.

David Cansick from Great Yarmouth has called on the authorities to get to grips with the seagull problem following the incident.

Mr Cansick who is also asthmatic had to run back to his home in Blake Road to free himself from the nuisance bird.

"It was frightening. I was walking home when the attack happened," he said.

"The seagull hit me on the back of the head and flew off.

Mr Cansick was walking back to his home in Blake Road. Picture: Joseph NortonMr Cansick was walking back to his home in Blake Road. Picture: Joseph Norton

"The next minute it was back and did exactly the same thing.

"I couldn't believe it.

"It was like something out of a movie."

The 77-year-old who has lived in Great Yarmouth for almost 40 years was later attacked one more time.

'Don't feed the seagulls'. Picture: Nick Butcher'Don't feed the seagulls'. Picture: Nick Butcher

He said: "I was only about 70 yards away from my front door so I decided the only way to stop it from happening for a fourth time was to run home.

"When I got back my wife thought I was going to have a heart attack because I was so out of breath."

Mr Cansick said the bird left a mark on his head but to add to his woes the seagull had pooed on him.

The Great Yarmouth man has lived in Blake Road for more than 20 years but said gulls have become an increasing problem on the street.

The hawk, which was flown over Lowestoft town centre to warn off seagulls, courtesy of Norfolk Wild Encounters. Pictures: Mick HowesThe hawk, which was flown over Lowestoft town centre to warn off seagulls, courtesy of Norfolk Wild Encounters. Pictures: Mick Howes

"This isn't the first incident of a seagull attack I know of," Mr Cansick said.

"A lot of my neighbours have had similar issues.

"They are a real nuisance."

A number of other residents in Great Yarmouth have previously raised concern with the increasingly violent gulls.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council has continued to trial and assess walking a hawk around the town centre in the lead up to the breeding season for seagulls.

MORE: CCTV shows mobility scooter drive into seagull

The hawk is designed to deter the gulls from nesting in the rooftops of town centre buildings.

Chairman of the environment committee, Penny Carpenter, said: "Gulls are intelligent, social birds who choose to nest together with close access to food.

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"In recent years, they have spread into some suburban areas due to people disposing of waste irresponsibly.

"Where issues of over-feeding are reported to us, officers visit the householder and wider area to provide advice."

This year the council also launched the campaign 'Are you feeding the gull problem?' to make people aware they should not be feeding seagulls.

Seagulls in Lowestoft

Lowestoft is another seaside town which has had to take action in an attempt to reduce the number of seagull attacks.

Chairman of Lowestoft Vision , Dan Poitras, said he believes the town has the issue under control.

In March this year Norfolk Wild Encounters were commissioned to fly a hawk around the town centre.

"We've put a number of measures in place to help manage the problem including flying the hawk," Mr Poitras said.

"Seagulls are protected species so we are a bit limited in what we can do.

"Flying the hawk is seen as a long-term solution but we have also made a particular effort to let people know they should not be feeding seagulls.

"Reducing the food and waste supply definitely makes a big difference."

Town's have a limited window of a couple of months in which they can fly a hawk due to the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

Mr Poitras was confident the measures the town's business improvement district (BID) had implemented were effective but warned there was no short-term fix.

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