North-east MSP Karen Adam vows to seek solutions to seagull problems
Local MSP Karen Adam has vowed to do all she can to come up ways of tackling the problems in Aberdeenshire coastal towns caused by seagulls.
The MSP for Banffshire and Buchan Coast chaired an online public meeting attended by 45 people on the seagull issue last Wednesday, giving residents the chance to air their views and hear about possible solutions.
Ms Adam had reached out to Aberdeenshire and Moray councils, bird and conservation organisations, and a pest control expert to sit on the panel for the public meeting after substantial number of constituents got in touch with her to highlight the impact gulls were having on their lives.
Ms Adam said: “Thank you again to everyone who has contacted me about the gull issue.
"From Buckie to Boddam and along the North-east coast, this is an issue that has had a profound impact on locals for a long time.
“The public meeting has been immensely helpful, and I hope is the beginning of collaborative working across local authorities and the relevant organisations to make a collective effort to take safe and humane measures to tackle the problem.
"I’m really glad as well that everyone who stayed until the end was able to have their say and voice their thoughts.
"Every contribution made by members of the public was constructive and respectful and there are a lot of action points to take away from this.”
Constituents were able to pre-submit questions to Ms Adam and were then able to make further contributions during the meeting, ensuring everyone had their voice heard.
Issues highlighted during the meeting included being woken by gull noise, having doors and windows regularly splattered, damage to property and having to cope with aggressive gulls protective of their nests.
As well as promising to work towards finding a positive solution to the ongoing issues, Ms Adam welcomed Aberdeenshire Council’s move to set up a review into how it deals with seagulls.
She added: “There is no single measure that will have much of an impact to address the effect gulls are having on the wellbeing and safety of people living on the coast.
"However, and this is why collaborative working is so important, and by introducing a package of measures, we may be able to tackle the gull issue head on.
"It’s going to be a tough task but I will do everything I can within my remit so that we can get a positive outcome from this.
“I understand the impact it’s having and that’s why organising this meeting was really important.
"The concerns of my constituents are now out in the open and we also had the opportunity to learn what can be collectively done to combat this.
“I know that realistically this will be challenging, it will take years to get under control, but that’s exactly why it’s important we start preparations as soon as possible, there are measures we can take in both the short and long term on this.
"I was only elected in May but now I am in a position where I may be able to affect change.
"Someone needs to do something about this and I’m willing to try my best to do exactly that.”