Stop the Shooting of Seagulls in Argentina

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Target: Marcelo Bertellotti, Biologist at the National Patagonia Center

Goal: Protect the seagulls from unnecessary shootings by the Argentinean police

In the southern Atlantic Ocean region, the seagulls have learned to peck at the backs of the southern right whales for a source of daily food. The population of seagulls has skyrocketed and Argentinean officials are turning to guns and violence as solutions to their problems. They are claiming that the seagulls are overpopulated due to the seagulls’ discovery of a new food source, and plan to shoot the seagulls. However, environmentalists state that the Argentinean officials’ decision to kill the birds is ill-advised.

Biologist Marcelo Bertellotti of the National Patagonia Center proposed the 100-day plan of shooting seagulls that are actively pecking at these whales. The dead seagulls will ideally be picked up to prevent contamination of the waters. The seagulls have been harming the whales that travel to the gulf for birthing purposes and biologists fear the pecking will drive the whales away. Although the amount of damage the seagulls inflict on the whales is not certain, what is certain is the effect these seagulls will have on tourism.

First, if the whales choose to migrate to another area, it will be harder to attract tourists to the gulf off of the Patagonian city of Puerto Madryn. Second, the whales stay in the water longer to avoid the constant pecking which also harms the whale watching industry. Although the seagulls clearly harm tourism, the damage they do on the whales is still circumspective and these seagulls should not be killed merely to save tourism. There are other measures that can be taken that will protect both animals from this unfortunate event.

Seagulls have been flourishing off of the huge dump sites in the province of Chubut. According to environmentalists, the amount of garbage the province produces is most likely the seagulls’ main source of food and by closing down the garbage dumps, the population of seagulls should decrease significantly. The seagulls also feed a lot off of the fish scraps that local fishermen throw away.  If these two problems were dealt with, the population of seagulls will return to normal and the shootings would not be necessary. In addition, the shooters may not retrieve every dead seagull, which will harm the waters and the whales even more.

The Argentinean officials must not resort to Bertellotti’s solution because it is not a good one. They must stop the shootings before more damage is done.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Biologist Marcelo Bertellotti,

I realize the dangers the seagulls are imposing on the whales that swim to the gulf off of the Patagonian city of Puerto Madryn. These innocent and threatened whales only want to swim and breathe in peace, yet the seagulls are constantly biting their backs. The whales have stopped breaching the waters like they used to. However, your proposal to murder the seagulls will not solve anything. Killing animals to save another animal is detrimental.

Before your plan gets implemented, think of all of the damage it may cause. Not every single dead seagull will be cleaned up from the waters, and that may permanently damage the quality of the ocean. Instead of shooting these birds, cleaning up dumpsters and fish scraps may be a simpler and less violent answer. Not only will there be less food for the seagulls, the area will be cleaner as well.

Protecting the whales is vital, but not at the expense of innocent birds. Stop the shootings and start cleaning up the area.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

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