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NPS Employee Feeding Seagulls At DCA, Is It Legal?

Mon Dec 30, 2002 6:37 am

I frequently go to Gravelly Point to watch planes at Washington National Airport. Lately, I've observed National Park Service employees feeding the seagulls at that park. Is this illegal and dangerous to the planes landing and taking off at DCA?

These are the NPS employees who collect trash from the parking area. They drive up in a Ford F-150 pickup truck with NPS logo and US Gov't license plates. As they remove the full bags of trash, they toss some of it to the seagulls. (to the delight of the birds, of course) Sometimes that attract as many as 60 to 80 seagulls! (plus some pigeons and small birds)

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RE: NPS Employee Feeding Seagulls At DCA, Is It Le

Mon Dec 30, 2002 6:44 am

I have nothing intelligent to add to this except...

Those are seagulls? I used to go down there too quite frequently and I noticed the birds, but I guess I never noticed they were seagulls.

Something more intelligent:

I doubt its illegal. A bad idea, certainly, but probably not illegal.

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RE: NPS Employee Feeding Seagulls At DCA, Is It Legal?

Mon Dec 30, 2002 12:00 pm

My guess would be, yes, it is illegal, since technically they are littering (ironic that a NPS worker who is assigned to garbage pick-up would be littering ...).

About 7 or so years ago I used to go down to DCA to one of the short-term parking areas, strangely enough to watch planes and birds, and as I recall they tried to keep the birds (gulls, & terns mostly -- I saw my first bald eagle there, too  Big thumbs up ) off the runway with those cannon things, or whatever it is that makes the loud explosions. The birds seemed to be totally unphased by the noise  Sleepy; however, I will say that the vast majority of them were always hanging out on the flats, right beside the river, and weren't in as bad of a spot as the gulls that liked to waddle around on the runway. But they're obviously still pretty close to the runway, nonetheless.