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Call for netting that could stop birds nesting to be removed from second Tesco supermarket

PUBLISHED: 08:20 02 April 2019 | UPDATED: 10:38 02 April 2019

Netting has been installed around the perimeter of the Tesco Extra in Dereham. Picture: SUE COLE

Netting has been installed around the perimeter of the Tesco Extra in Dereham. Picture: SUE COLE

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Netting which could stop migrating birds including swallows has been installed at a second Tesco supermarket, sparking fears it could contribute to a decline in the species.

There are fears swallows could suffer from netting installed around the eaves of Dereham's Tesco Extra. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARYThere are fears swallows could suffer from netting installed around the eaves of Dereham's Tesco Extra. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARY

The netting was has been installed around the eaves of the Tesco Extra in Dereham.

Sue Cole, from Catton, said she was “horrified” the supermarket had put up the netting.

Ms Cole, whose sister regularly shops at the branch, said: “It’s horrifying because the swallows are coming back soon.

“Swallows are becoming endangered and they always go back to the place they were born. We are going to lose more swallows because of it. “Also it’s cruel - birds get caught in it and they suffer.”

Netting has been installed around the perimeter of the Tesco Extra in Dereham. Picture: SUE COLENetting has been installed around the perimeter of the Tesco Extra in Dereham. Picture: SUE COLE

It follows an outcry after similar netting was seen at the Tesco Harford Bridge supermarket in Norwich last month.

The company said those nets were to address health and safety concerns over bird droppings falling onto trolleys, and they had sought advice from experts.

But Tesco later said it would remove the netting at Harford Bridge after some, including TV presenter Jake Humphrey, reacted with anger.

Mr Humphrey tweeted: “Seriously @Tesco?!? Netting off swallow nesting sites in trolley shelters in Norwich. Experts say returning swallows will get caught and die. Take them down!!!!!”

Netting has been installed around the perimeter of the Tesco Extra in Dereham. Picture: SUE COLENetting has been installed around the perimeter of the Tesco Extra in Dereham. Picture: SUE COLE

The company announced later on Twitter: “We’ve listened to feedback from customers and are temporarily removing the nets above the trolley bay at our Norwich Harford Bridge Superstore.

“We are in discussions with a number of parties to identify other solutions that protect the swallows nesting near the trolley bays and ensure we maintain the highest health and safety standards for our customers.”

But a Tesco spokesman said they had no plans to remove the netting from the Dereham store.

The spokesman said: “Swallows are not affected by the netting as there are no swallows present at the Dereham Extra store.

“There is also no history of swallows at the store.”

Ms Cole said she would think twice about shopping at her local Tesco if the netting was not removed.

She said: “There is a lot of concern about wildlife - we have to co-exist and do the best we can to look after one another.”

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