Tuesday, 20 November, 2018

Somerset drunk gulls found 'stinking of alcohol'

Melissa Porter | 09 July, 2018, 12:29

One theory is that the seagulls have been consuming booze left behind on beaches by boozed up revellers, another that they've been swooping in on grain by-products from a local brewery.

One RSPCA centre in West Hatch near Taunton, Somerset has reportedly had to deal with nearly 30 paralytic birds in a two week period, some of which have even been puking from excessive alcohol consumption.

RSPCA vet David Couper urged vets to look out for the signs after he treated a number of the gulls at the charity's West Hatch Wildlife Centre in Taunton.

Several birds who reportedly stunk of alcohol have been brought into multiple RSPCA centers for treatment and were released after a few days of care.

Animal rescuers have been collecting the gulls along the South Coast, fearing, at first, the birds had succumbed to the deadly bacterial disease, botulism.

He said they have had gulls coming in from all over Devon as well as Lyme Regis and Bridport in Dorset.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said this week they've received more than a dozen reports of seagulls staggering, disoriented and confused, according to the Somerset County Gazette.

"Sadly, a few of the birds have died but a lot of them have made good recoveries and have been released after a few days in our care".

Tracking down the source is proving hard but local breweries and distilleries after being urged to check the leftovers from their production process and ensure it can not be accessed by birds and wildlife.

Anyone who has any concerns for the welfare of a bird or any animal can contact the RSPCA's 24-hour helpline on 0300 1234 999.