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Video of mass of seagulls attracted by woman feeding them, Cambridge Road, Dover

By Sam Lennon

This is the extraordinary sight of a horde of seagulls flocking around a woman feeding them.

The unknown woman, in a purple coat, appears to be throwing food at them from a bag, possibly breadcrumbs, in Cambridge Road, Dover.

The 37-second video has appeared on Facebook and attracted astonishment from Dovorians.

Many people feel that feeding these birds only encourages them as they are already aggressive about snatching food from people in the open air.

Dovorian Ed Baker commented: “The seagulls aren’t enough of a nuisance around here?!Crazy lady. A whole sack of bread or something.”

"I’m actually concerned about this as it’s coming up to summer.

"This lady’s act which to her is in good intent but seagulls can be a danger to people.”

Julia Perry commented: “Quite frightening if that amount swoop past you to get to the food.

"Also encourages them to breed.

"They are natural scavengers. They will survive on what they can find, they don’t need extra help.”

Other Facbook commentators defended the woman, some saying that at least these birds would not now tear open bin bags.

Donna Riccoboni said: “She is feeding birdS. It’s not as if she is fly tipping. I’m pretty sure the birds won’t leave anything behind.”

The RSPB discourages the feeding of gulls, saying they then rely too much on people providing sources of food.

The birds would not then distinguish between food being offered and people simply walking around carrying it or food in the open, such as on outdoor cafe tables.

Dover District Council spokesman Andy Steele said: We know that for many people, feeding garden birds at home is a pleasurable experience.

" However, we advise against feeding birds such as gulls in our town centres as this can result in vermin, build-up of droppings and damage to buildings, and can be harmful to the birds themselves.

"The birds are natural scavengers and will find their own food sources.

"Our first priority is to educate, and our environmental enforcement officers would advise accordingly where they see people feeding gulls and pigeons.”

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