First, it was ‘Percy’ the pigeon and all his pals but now it’s ‘Cyril’ the swan and his mates who are causing feathers to fly in Horncastle.
Last month, town councillors urged people to stop feeding pigeons amid claims the birds were causing a mess on pavements and damaging buildings.
Now, the council is asking residents to think carefully before feeding ‘Cyril’ and the ducks who congregate on the River Bain near Tesco bridge.
For years, families have fed the ducks which have become something of an attraction.
But at last week’s town council meeting, a letter from a Horncastle mum was read out.
And, it appears ‘Cyril’ is very much the villain of the peace.
The woman said she and her toddler - who was in a pushchair - were happily feeding the ducks.
However, she was worried when ‘Cyril’ arrived on the scene ... scaring the toddler.
Town clerk Gillian Mauger said she could understand the concerns of the mum.
Mrs Mauger said swans were ‘large birds who potentially could take a child’s eye out’.
Town and county councillor Bill Aron reminded councillors they had recently received an email - saying it is unhealthy to feed bread to birds.
Coun Aron suggested the council could put up signs, warning people not to feed bread to ducks - and also the danger posed by swans.
He was backed by town and district councillor Fiona Martin who agreed feeding the birds was a concern from both a health and safety aspect.
Coun Brian Burbidge also said there was a safety issue to consider adding that ‘swans could be dangerous’.
Councillors went on to consider erecting a fence after hearing that steps had been installed at that particular section of the river, making it easier to feed birds.
However, Coun Phil Cantweell said it was ridiculous to stop families feeding the birds.
He was backed by Coun Rose Williams who said generations of children had been ‘brought’ up’ with regular visits to the Bain.
Coun David Roark said it was the responsibility of parents to decide whether to allow children to feed birds and to make sure they were safe.