Advertisement

 SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Even the sea gulls are throwing the struggling San Francisco Giants for a loss this year.
Giants officials trying to find humane solution to the worsening onslaught of the birds at home games are stumped, the San Jose Mercury News reported Saturday (http://tinyurl.com/kat6ovo ).
The gulls have routinely showed up at the end of night games since the park along San Francisco Bay opened in 2000. But it appears an increasing number of birds are crashing night games this year, bothering players, workers and fans alike.
A national television audience witnessed a massive swarm in March during the World Baseball Classic semifinal between the Netherlands and the Dominican Republic, and similar invasions have occurred throughout the year.
Hundreds of gulls sometimes land on the field during play. They also defecate on fans and create cleanup headaches for staff.
Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford said batters are well aware of the birds.
``You're focused on the pitcher,'' he said. ``But you definitely notice them.''
Biologists said they don't know how the sea gulls time their arrival for the end of games to feast on discarded hot dogs, popcorn and other food.
``They are incredibly intelligent animals,'' said biologist Russ Bradley, a sea gull specialist. ``Unless you want to build a dome, there's no easy answer.''
The gulls disappeared late in the 2011 season when a red-tailed hawk nicknamed ``Bruce Lee'' began frequenting the park. But when the hawk disappeared, the gulls returned.
Federal law prohibits shooting the birds, and hiring a falconer to scare them away would cost $8,000 a game, said Jorge Costa, the Giants' manager of operations. The Giants are also concerned a falcon could gruesomely kill a sea gull in front of families and a television audience, Costa said.
``It's an issue we are taking seriously,'' Costa said. ``But it's delicate. You don't want to get to the point where you do anything that looks inhumane.''
---
Information from: San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News, http://www.mercurynews.com

Top MLB Public Bets

MLB Top Stories

Thumbnail Giants aim to obliterate Rockies again San Francisco erupted for 19 hits in last night’s victory over Colorado. Will the West Coast crowd witness further offensive heroics...
Thumbnail Cards seek to build momentum against Reds Jhonny Peralta’s had a tough time since returning from the disabled list on June 7. Perhaps, though, he’s rediscovering that familiar power stroke when it matters...
Thumbnail Yanks keeping slim hopes alive vs. Red Sox Clay Buchholz proved his playoff bona fides in 2013. In order for the Red Sox to inflict some real damage this October, the righty may have to be equally...
Thumbnail Reds threatening Cardinals' playoff prospects The Cardinals have laid some absolutely clunkers at Busch Stadium this season. Nothing, however, compares to the embarrassment...
Thumbnail Indians vs. Tigers Prediction With the AL Central locked up, will the Cleveland Indians have a letdown tonight against the desperate Detroit Tigers at 7:10PM...
More inMLB Articles  

MLB Team Pages