Peacocks attack cars and wreak havoc in Beccles gardens
- Credit: Matthew Usher
The authorities in Beccles have announced plans to clamp down on a marauding gang which has been rampaging through the town in recent weeks.
The troublemakers in question are a group of peacocks – or an ostentation, to use the correct collective noun – which has taken up residence there. The origin of the birds remains a mystery, but since they appeared they have been blamed for damaging cars by pecking them – convinced their reflection is a rival – and wreaking havoc in gardens.
Now, following a series of complaints, a local councillor has agreed to take action. Graham Elliott, who represents Beccles North, has found a farm willing to take on the birds, but faces a further problem – how to catch them. He has now issued an appeal for help from the public in capturing them.
'From my point of view they are becoming a nuisance to quite a lot of people and I'm getting quite a lot of phone calls about them,' he said. 'I'm very happy to help in the safe capture of them. It is just a case of catching them. To be honest, we aren't making great progress and we need guidance in how best to do that.'
The ostentation – which includes peahens – has been spotted in the town over the past six months or so. It is not known where the birds have come from, and no one has come forward to claim them.
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They originally numbered at least seven, although there are suspicions the group is breeding and its numbers are growing.
So far they have taken up residence at properties in Ballygate, Homefield Paddock and Puddingmoor, to name but a few, and have destroyed gardens and scratched vehicles.
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Maisebrooke Farm, in Shipmeadow, has agreed to take the peacocks – if Mr Elliott can get them rounded up.
'I've been involved about the last six months and since then they have multiplied, but so has the damage they have done,' he said. 'They are beautiful to look at, but too numerous for a town centre location.'
Melanie Goodwin, who lives in Homefield Paddock, put up with them in her garden for six months before they moved on. 'They are very big birds and they are destructive without meaning to be. It's not personal, but they are in the wrong place.'
Can you help? Call Mr Elliott on 01502 714661.
Do you have an unusual wildlife story? Email firstname.lastname@example.org