But now, anyone found feeding the ducks in a popular Glasgow park faces the prospect of a fine amid fears it could lead to an infestation of rats.
Glasgow City Council has erected signs throughout the busy Queen’s Park, which spans the Strathbungo, Battlefield and Shawlands areas, urging the public to refrain from feeding birds because “food debris attracts vermin.”
Anyone caught could face a fixed penalty fine of £50 under section 87 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. The issue previously came to light when the park was hit by a plague of rats in 2011. Infestation control teams were called out to tackle the outbreak.
Steve McLachlan, 36, who lives nearby, said: “It sounds like a huge overreaction by the council and I’d like to see them try and impose a fine on a child who is throwing bread into the pond for the ducks. If there’s any hygiene problems it’s down to reduced rubbish collections.”
A council spokesman said yesterday: “Although there are currently no signs of vermin in the park, feeding the ducks has been shown to attract vermin in the past. We urge people to ensure the park remains a safe and enjoyable place for all and not feed the ducks.”