16.7.10

MR POOH
THE GULL

He's a seagull. Or maybe he's a cat. Or
maybe, given his nickname, he's
actually a bear.

Whatever he 'thinks' he is, Pooh the seagull
is a family pet. He has been part of the
Grimwood family from Shoreham-by-Sea
ever since he arrived unexpectedly as a baby.

Pooh didn't even arrive conventionally by exiting
an egg. In fact the Grimwoods found him in
their fireplace one day. "We heard a rustle
in the lounge when we were watching telly
and we suddenly thought 'Ooh - what's that?"
said June Grimwood. "We reached into the
chimney and pulled out
this young chick."

He was just a baby gull at the time, albeit an
ash-covered baby after falling
down the chimney.

"We put him back on the roof, but it was a bit
of a windy day and he fell back off."

Instead of getting into a flap, June and
Steve Grimwood calmly nursed him
and fed him cat food.

He ate it alongside some unlikely companions -
the family cats. "He slept in the cats' basket,
mingled in amongst the cats and
was happy as Larry,"


Then, one day, Pooh flew the nest. But he still
returns for six months every year. In fact, in
a sense, he's still at home with Mum and Dad,
because he and his partner nest on their roof.
Pooh comes in for meals three times a day,
with the cats Mitzi, Gus and Henry.


"He feeds out of the cat bowls, he comes indoors
and takes the cats' biscuits out of their feeder.
I think he does believe that he is actually a cat,"
said Mrs Grimwood. "I wouldn't say he's mixed up.
He's just very clever. He knows where a good
B&B is by the seaside every year."


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