Dublin pensioners told they may be fined if they feed the birds near their home
Bird droppings on window sills and the noise of squabbling seagulls and magpies has led to a bird-feeding clampdown by Dublin City Council.
Some residents of a senior citizens' flats complex urged the council to warn people about scattering large amounts of food for wild birds.
The city council wrote to residents of Mellowes Court in Finglas warning them they will be fined if they continue to spread food on the ground near the flats complex.
North West Area Labour Councillor Brendan Carr told the Herald that some local efforts to feed birds may be causing a health hazard.
"It may seem harmless but if it's having a negative impact on the environment and attracting rodents, then the council is obliged to take action," said Mr Carr.
"It can have knock-on effect and pose a danger to children's health.
"The matter will have to be resolved.
"The council is being responsible in writing to residents. People must act responsibly and heed the letter from the council," he said.
Local resident Patrick Mallon (74) told a Sunday newspaper he will continue to feed peanuts to wildlife.
He accepted seagulls and pigeons could be noisy but there were plenty of other birds to benefit from feeding.
The council letter referred to complaints by some residents about food waste such as dinner leftovers and stale bread being dumped on the ground in the vicinity of the complex.
"The waste food was attracting seagulls, magpies, pigeons, rats and mice.
"Residents also complained that larger birds are leaving droppings on their window sills," stated the council's warning letter.
"There are four small bird feeders on trees in the complex and this type of feeder is not causing any problem as it attracts small birds," it stated.
Fianna Fail Cllr David Costello said people have been complaining about neighbours throwing food on green spaces which causes a nuisance, including bird droppings on cars.
"In other areas, people who don't pay bin charges think they can throw food on the streets for birds," he said.