Never try to eat food on a seagull-ridden beach. Wave goodbye to your precious chips, fair coast-dweller. Kiss that Mr. Whippy farewell, for your tongue has tasted the last of it. Don’t even think about fish. Give in to the seagull warriors—the malevolent gods of all British beaches—for your attempts to shield anything edible are futile.
One brave man, however, did attempt to fight back against the food-pillaging winged beasts after they tried to steal his cheeseburger. Nate Rancloes has been fined $198 (£95) for kicking a seagull on a day out to a beach in New Hampshire, earlier this summer.
According to the Evening Standard, Rancloes tried to “shoo away” the bird after it went for his burger, but ended up kicking it in front of a group of onlookers. Rancloes, a decorated war veteran, denies intentionally trying to kick the bird.
In an interview with New Hampshire publication NH1, Rancloes said that attacking a seagull in front of numerous people would make him “the stupidest criminal ever,” and described the incident as “bad luck.”
“It is illegal and immoral to injure a seagull,” he told the publication. “This is no more than a simple mistake.”
Rancloes also described having to leave the beach after people started shouting at him. The injured seagull was taken to a lifeguard by a concerned woman, who was then bitten by the seagull, as was her child.
Rancloes later received his fine due to seagulls in New Hampshire being protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.
You win this time, stupid seagull.