Operational note - Management of gulls nesting on buildings

A gull, taken in profile. It has a white head and bright orange/yellow beak. It's eye looks directly at the camera.

Due to a change in legislation, Shetland Islands Council’s Environmental Health Service does not now offer a gulls’ nest removal service.

There have been changes in the licensing requirements governing who can take and/or remove gull’s eggs and nests to protect public health.  This work is now being overseen by Nature Scot. 

It is the responsibility of a property’s owner to apply for their own licence to undertake this work, and to oversee nest or egg removal and undertake any proofing works required for their property.

As the nesting season is fast approaching, it is strongly advised that any person in charge of premises which could be affected by nesting gulls makes contact with the licensing team at Nature Scot to get advice and guidance on how to apply for a license.

Information about how to apply can be found on the Nature Scot Website here -


More information about the removal and proofing of gulls’ nests can be found here -



For more information, contact Environmental Health on 01595 745250 or Nature Scot on 01463 701608

Published: 12th March 2024