Like something out of an old Alfred Hitchcock horror movie, an elderly couple was held hostage for six days by two nesting seagulls that would attack them every time they attempted to leave their house.
Roy Pickard, 77, and his wife Brenda, 71, of Knott End-on-Sea in Lancashire, England, were constantly confronted by the seagulls, which were caring for two chicks that ended up on the canopy directly above their front door, The Telegraph and Daily Mirror reported Friday.
“I’ve not been able to go out the front door,” Roy told The Telegraph. “If I try to get out of the door, the two adult birds are right there and I’ve got no chance. It’s genuinely frightening.”
One attack sent Roy to the hospital with a bloody head wound.
“If that bird had hit me in the face instead of the back of the head, I dread to think how seriously injured I would have been,” he told the Mirror.
Roy called local authorities, including animal organizations, but they found their options limited. Since they are herring gulls, they are protected once they nest.
Roy told the Mirror “they seem to put the rights of these birds above those of people, which is ridiculous.”
The BBC Radio Lancashire eventually provided a canopy shade tent set up adjacent the garage door to allow some temporary protection until the gulls are gone.
“My wife isn’t well or very mobile at the moment so we’re relying on me to get out,” Roy told The Telegraph.
“Thankfully, we have an integrated garage and I can get into it from the kitchen, open the garage door and drive out to get our shopping, but I have to leave the garage door open, which isn’t ideal.”
A Wyre Council spokesman told Metro they assessed the situation and has given the Pickards advice on dealing with the seagulls.
“We advise residents who have a problem with seagulls to bird proof their properties prior to the breeding season,” the spokesman told Metro.