Seagulls fly over the field as George Kontos #70 of the San Francisco Giants pitches against the New York Mets in the 15th inning at AT&T Park on July 8, 2013 in San Francisco, California.
San Francisco Giant officials are reportedly trying to find humane solutions to the onslaught of the birds at home games. They are stumped, the Mercury News reported.
The gulls have routinely showed up at the end of night games since the park along San Francisco Bay opened in 2000. But it appears an increasing number of birds are crashing night games this year, bothering players, workers and fans alike.
A massive swarm appeared in March during the World Baseball Classic semifinal between the Netherlands and the Dominican Republic, but it is not uncommon to see them near the end of games. Post game swarms are quite noisy.
Hundreds of gulls sometimes land on the field during play. They also defecate on fans and create cleanup headaches for staff.
Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford said batters are well aware of the birds. "You're focused on the pitcher," he said. "But you definitely notice them."
Biologists said they don't know how the sea gulls time their arrival for the end of games to feast on discarded hot dogs, popcorn and other food. "They are incredibly intelligent animals," said biologist Russ Bradley, a sea gull specialist. "Unless you want to build a dome, there's no easy answer."