Fending off seagull scourge
Binn Group has come up with a feather-brained scheme to tackle pest control at the Binn Ecopark site.
Every day, 17-year-old Harris Hawk Sharon swoops in to challenge the flocks of seagulls that constantly plague the waste handling and recycling complex.
And so feared is the feathered teenager that her arrival in handler Martin Gunn’s truck each day is enough to send the wary seagulls into a flap.
Binn Group Operations Director Stewart Smith explained the vital role played by the taloned teammate.
“Seagulls are a real pest at a facility such as ours,” he said. “They make a mess with droppings on the roofs, vehicles and machinery, they drag bits of waste materials around and they get in amongst the deposited waste and processed materials.
“We’ve tried everything from electronic bird scarers to flying kites over the years but Sharon is the best by far”
“We’ve tried everything from electronic bird scarers to flying kites over the years but Sharon is the best by far,” added Stewart. “The seagulls don’t come anywhere near when she’s around.”
Handler Martin has reared Sharon since she was only weeks old and Binn Ecopark has been her workplace for the past six years.
“She loves her job here,” he explained. “She gets to fly around, scares the pesky seagulls and earns a treat when she comes back to the call.
“Sharon could easily take down a seagull but she’s not on a seek and destroy mission – it’s enough that she’s seen as the predator by the other birds and they soon clear off.
“Sharon will land on the rooftops at Binn Ecopark and nothing else will fly close,” said Martin, “or she’ll fly around and clear the area of seagulls completely.
“I love working with her for Binn Group – out in the open air throughout the seasons in a beautiful part of the countryside. Beats an office job any day!”