Wednesday, 22 May 2024

Woman covered in blood after seagull attack warns others about aggression

A woman from Wales has been badly attacked by a seagull after she “felt a strike” on the back of her head whilst walking in her garden.

Rhiannon Fennell, 69, who lives in Denbighshire was walking out of her back door and towards her shed. The force to her head was so strong, she thought a brick had hit her, and is warning others of the risks of vicious seagulls.

Ms Fennell said: “I went out through the back door to go to the shed and as soon as I stepped foot outside, the seagull swept down and hit me over the head.”

She added: “I thought a brick had fallen on my head as I was knocked to the ground. It was quite vicious really, it pecked on my head and I couldn’t see because the blood had run down my face and over my glasses.”

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Ms Fennell has lived in the area for around three decades, but she says the behaviour of the seagulls has become rife in her town.

Pictures shared with North Wales Live show blood running down the side of the pensioner’s face. After the attack, she had to wash away the blood, and rub antiseptic cream on the wound to prevent any infection from developing. She also admitted she had to take painkillers to ease the feeling of the wound.

Ms Fennell said the birds have been nesting in chimney pots on her neighbours’ roofs for years, but this is the first time she had been attacked by the birds.

When nesting, seagulls can become very defensive. To protect their young, they can adopt very aggressive and intimidating behaviours. They can choose to attack if they feel threatened or perceive a threat.

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Ms Fennell jokingly compared her time living in Wales to living in Africa: “I lived in Africa for 30 years where they have all sorts of dangerous animals and I was never attacked. Now I am living in Prestatyn and I get attacked by a seagull!”

Meanwhile, Tony Williams, who runs a pest control business in the Vale of Glamorgan says once nests have been vacated at the end of breeding season you can put measures in to spot them coming back.

He said: “If they’re on your chimney and they tend to nest between, the best thing to do is to put a well-meshed tent over the whole of it to stop them building a nest.”

The BBC reports Denbighshire Council says gulls are a common cause of complaint. It urges residents to take care when eating food and is looking into ways to solve the problem. A spokesperson said: “Whilst the number of incidents is low, they can be very distressing.”

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