You are here:Home > News > Council News > Feeding of animals and birds: Council clarifies amended byelaw proposal

Feeding of animals and birds: Council clarifies amended byelaw proposal

Wednesday, 20 November 2019 13:43

Douglas Borough Council is to seek approval from Tynwald to amend the Douglas General Byelaws 2013 - in particular Byelaw 19 which relates to ‘feeding of animals and birds’ - and extend the current prohibited feeding zone to cover the entire Borough of Douglas.


Under Byelaw 19 the Council’s Enforcement Officers have the power to issue fixed penalty notices to people feeding birds and animals in open spaces in a way and in volumes that could attract gatherings of wildlife and/or vermin.


Council Leader Councillor David Christian MBE JP said: ‘The changes the Council is proposing are not about targeting well-meaning householders who have bird tables or garden feeders in their gardens. This we applaud. It’s about putting enforcement measures in place to deal with irresponsible individuals who persistently mass-feed birds, especially seagulls. This is a practice which attracts large concentrations of birds, causes widespread public nuisance and distress and encourages vermin. It also places undue demands on the Council’s street cleansing operations and compromises our efforts to project a positive image for Douglas.


‘The Council will not let this antisocial behaviour go unchallenged. The changes to enforcement legislation the Council is seeking to introduce is to remove any doubt or confusion over what are designated prohibited areas and bring clarity to the Douglas General Byelaws 2013. These are currently under review and we will be looking to submit an updated version of the byelaws to Tynwald for approval in 2020.


‘In matters of upholding byelaws, the Council will always seek to educate and change behaviours in the first instance. Enforcement measures are a last resort aimed at repeat offenders. As custodians of the capital the Council remains unshakeable in its determination to deliver on its Corporate Plan and ensure Douglas is a clean, green, safe and desirable place to live, work and visit. In short, we will always take action to protect and preserve community quality of life in Douglas.’