"It's like a rule in South Shields that you don't eat on King Street."
Gazette readers have been sharing their views on some of the town's longest-serving residents after a toddler was left bruised following a swoop from a seagull.
And she was not along in her criticism, with others revealing their fear to eat outside where the "bold and cheeky" birds can take a chance at their food.
A number of people also confirmed they know someone who has fallen victim to a similar attack to that suffered by the toddler, saying more needs to be done to prevent it happening again in future.
But some Gazette readers have said sharing space with the seagulls is just part of life in a seaside town.
A number of people criticised their fellow South Shields residents for dropping litter and scraps of food which attract the birds - and added that the birds should be left alone.
Here is what you had to say about the issue on the Shields Gazette Facebook page:
Stephen Shaw: "It’s one of the two things anyone from Shields should know. Don’t make eye contact with people carrying clipboards and you don’t eat on King Street."
Zara-Louise Geary: "I used to never let my little girl eat outside unless the storm cover was on the pram out of fear of a seagull trying to pinch her food."
Charlie Kostromin: "Simply don’t eat outside."
Dan Jameson: "Seagulls have always been a problem but this is their home too."
Diane Rose Richardson: "We live in a seaside town. Hence seagulls."
Kayleigh Jane Dodd: "I won’t eat walking through King Street for this very reason!"
Alison Graham Lindsay: "It is us humans to blame we eat and drop food outside and the seagulls don't know the difference."
Edwina Farrar: "It's sad but seagulls have taken over the town, my husband was attacked by one as he was eating a sausage roll."
Jaynii Elizabeth Milne: "It’s like a rule in South Shields that you don’t eat on King Street."
Nikki Pattinson-Petterson: "Seagulls are a beautiful bird leave them be."
David Richardson: "Time for a massive cull! They are getting far too aggressive! This is a safety factor when young children are being hurt & injured."
Chelsie Jade Boyack: "The poor bairn's ear looks really sore, she must have been really scared and it must have really hurt! The seagulls are a problem, we all know that; but it’s also part of living in a seaside town, it’s rubbish but they do swoop and steal food."
Maria Ward: "We live in a seaside town, there's always going to be gulls around, we have a choice to eat inside, they don't and they have babies to feed too."
Sonia Spence: "I've never considered them to be an issue, sad about your little girl though, hope she's okay, all the birds are doing is trying to feed their babies like everyone else."
Rob Paris: "Yes they are a problem. They are big birds they are bold and cheeky and we are easy targets for them eating food in public."
Garry McKenna: "This is more common than people think."
Maggie Bullen: "They're dangerous birds, that's why I never eat outside in the cafes."
John Barton: "They are so brazen. I don't think they should be classed as protected. They are a menace. They are as bad as dangerous dogs. They come right up to you."
Peter Woolford: "They are sea birds so they will always be here, but they are becoming more aggressive."
Laura Bracewell: "People shouldn't feed them either."
Kate Roberts: "Leave the seagulls alone."
Sandi Bastholm: "More has to be done."