A Glenrothes pensioner who suffered a heart attack after being targeted by an aggressive gull says she cannot sleep since her terrifying ordeal.
Margaret Cruickshanks is still experiencing flashbacks to last week’s horrific attack while she was walking her son’s cocker spaniel in Kirkcaldy’s Hayfield area.
The 80-year-old has had a stent fitted following her heart attack, having been transported to hospital with chest pains just hours after the winged menace latched on to her head and attempted to rip out her hair.
Describing her walk along Prime Gilt Box Street, she said: “This gull kept swooping down on me and was touching my hair with its feet.
“I thought it was unbelievable but I kept walking and the further I went, the more it swooped on me.
“I never saw it coming back and it landed on my head.
“Its beak was hitting my head and trying to pull my hair out.
“I was hysterical and was screaming for help, banging on doors, but there was no answer.
“I eventually found a man and he walked me home.”
On returning to her son’s home, Mrs Cruickshanks began to feel chest pains and took paracetamol before returning to her flat in Glenrothes.
However, the pains continued and she dialled 999, with paramedics informing her she was suffering a heart attack.
Taken to Kirkcaldy’s Victoria Hospital and then the Royal Infirmary in Edinburgh, she has had a stent fitted to regulate her heart.
Mrs Cruickshanks said she had no doubt her heart attack was triggered by the gull attack — and that the incident had left more than just physical wounds.
Now recovering at home, she said: “I’m still having flashbacks. It sounds silly but I felt it was going for my eyes. I can’t sleep at night for thinking about it.”
Aggressive gulls are a problem throughout Fife’s coastal towns but Kirkcaldy has been a particular trouble spot for several years.
A nest and egg removal initiative to humanely control gull numbers in the area has been undertaken by town centre BID group Kirkcaldy 4 All.