Researchers know how to stop seagulls from stealing your French fries - stare at the birds. This tip comes from a UK university. Researchers tested this. They put some fries on the ground and checked how long it took gulls to snatch them without anyone looking at them. They did the same test, but with someone making eye contact. The birds took an extra 21 seconds to approach the food when a researcher stared at them.
The researchers said the staring deterred the gulls. Only 26 per cent of the birds tried to take the food with the eye contact. Three-quarters of the birds stood still or flew away. Gulls have a bad reputation for food-snatching. A researcher said: "Gulls often swoop in from behind and people are completely oblivious. Gulls are often seen as aggressive and...take food from humans. It was interesting to find that most wouldn't even come near during our tests."