A rogue gull is wreaking havoc by attacking terrified shoppers in Sunderland city centre.
The feathered fiend has dive-bombed staff at The Bridges shopping centre and stolen food from passers by.
And nothing can be done about the attacks due to the seabird's protected status.
The herring gull, which has a four foot wingspan, swooped on Sky Tyne and Wear reporter Nisha Joshi as she tucked into her lunch.
Staff in the nearby New Look store said the attacks were the work of a single aggressive bird, which they watched in horror from within the safety of the store.
Sunderland City Council’s portfolio holder for public health, wellness and culture Councillor John Kelly said the council was trying to contriol the number of gulls in the city.
But he said the council was limited in what it could do by the gull's protected status, under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.
He said parent birds often swooped during the breeding season, particularly when the young birds were leaving the nest and were unable to fly.
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