SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – Legislation in San Francisco designed to prevent birds from deadly accidents involving high-rise windows has passed a Board of Supervisors committee and will be presented to the full board.

Proponents of the “bird-safe” building standards told the board’s land use committee that clear glass window panes pose a hazard to migratory and local birds because they don’t necessarily recognize that glass is in their flight pattern, resulting in dead or injured birds upon impact.

The proposed legislation would require builders to install treated windows on any new construction determined to pose a great risk to birds.

KCBS’ Barbara Taylor Reports:

“They’re fledgling for the first time, flying for the first time, they’re smashing into windows like crazy,” said Judy Irving, who cares for the wild parrots of Telegraph Hill. “It’s not just migratory birds.”

She spoke fondly of a parrot named Phoenix.

“We’ve been taking care of her for ten years now and will take care of her for the rest of her life because she has vision problems as a result of that crack with the glass wind break.”

Critics described the proposed regulations as costly and vague. “During a tenuous economic climate in a city that’s already very difficult to build in,” added architect Emily Bello.

Ultimately, the committee approved the “bird-safe” building standards, which were forwarded to the full board for consideration.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Comments (127)
  1. LEL says:

    I’ve heard caves and lean-toes are “bird friendly”.

    1. Charlie Darwin says:

      Its called eradicating the gene pool of morons, if a bird is stupid enough to fly into a building, then it doesn’t need to pass on its inferior genes………. Hmmph, maybe we need to enact bills that would ban idiots from breeding these Board of Supervisors.

      1. Vina Sestonari says:

        “Its called eradicating the gene pool of morons”

        Thanks, Professor. I always thought it was called “survival of the fittest”.

        Now that Drudge has linked the story, here come 500+ posts saying the same thing. Basically 500 angry dudes seeing who can thump their chests the hardest, and see who can come up with the “wittiest” way of saying San Fran/California is nutty.

      2. darryl says:

        Since you’re yig to come off with such an air of superiority Vina, I have to point out you didn’t need a comma after “thanks”….and yes, San Fran is full of left-wing, dumb-ass wackos.

      3. speedstan says:

        Hey, Vina, you people in Frisco wouldn’t have to worry about 500+ people calling you nutcakes if your city didn’t keep making itself the laughingstock of the country by coming up with this stuff. Heck, even Leno and Letterman can’t make this stuff up…

      4. Uncle-Grumpy says:

        Hear hear Vina! Not ALL of us got here from Drudge, some of us meandered in from the cross-post at HotAir. And not all of us make fun of “San Francicans”, although you must admit, many times you guys on the Left Coast seem to paint large targets on yourselves.

        (On a positive note, I do enjoy KDFC.)

        Watch the birdie!

    2. RLABruce says:

      They won’t approve a cave for occupancy, and they won’t give you a permit to build a lean-to.

    3. sam8131 says:

      Shut the city down and send them all to Iran!

    4. Jen06 says:

      The migratory birds will glide safely past the San Francisco high rises only to be chopped to smithereens by the wind mills up on the Altamont Pass. You gotta love green!

      1. White Cracker says:

        California is STUPID… Give me a friggin break!

  2. Brian says:

    Really? I mean really? What won’t the People’s Republic of California think of next? I bet fish bump their widdle heads on the supports for bridges. You going to legislate hovering bridges next?

    1. MSB says:

      Don’t give these lunatics any ideas.

    2. Bill Brennan says:

      Best comment ever!

      1. Freedom Fighter says:

        Wouldn’t hovering bridges be a danger to birds? I think California should demolish its bridges to make sure no more birds and fish are needlessly placed in danger.

      2. Fishsnot says:

        The REALLY, REALLY BIG QUESTION… many freakin’ birds do we REALLY, REALLY need??????

  3. Mr. Kelly says:

    How about we do this instead. Any new or different kind of bird deterant system that exists. Subtract the cost of how the builder was going to do it, then force the proponents of this bill to pay the difference. Everyone wins. Everyone gets what they want.

    1. Andrew Brown says:

      EXCEPT the taxpayers who will eventually foot the bill. People forget, we’re the one who pay for all this crazy stuff!

  4. Fist-pumpin' says:

    Liberals and the regulations. Just seems like such a contradiction.

    Thanks for your continued efforts to send job to other states.

  5. Innumerable buildings already have protective measures for birds (and to deter birds from perching) built into them…this is just the continuation of a trend.

    1. Critical reader says:

      …and your sources to back up this statement are?
      Also, I suspect that our definitions of “innumerable” may not agree.

      I believe the bit on perching deterrence, but that is something entirely different from a mechanism by which a bird is prevented from colliding with a building. You can’t magically merge the statistics (or insinuate their equivalence) and claim that one is indicative of the other. My criticism is not intended to insult; it is merely intended to bring to light that which I believe to be misleading.

  6. Joleen North says:

    How about bird safe windmills!!!

    1. Andrew Buckles says:

      This was EXACTLY my thought. You can’t drive through the cali windmills without being amused by the dead birds. Do you think they are going to switch to bird-friendly nuclear?

      1. Brian says:

        HAHAHAHAHA!!!!! Hell would have to freeze over x1000 before they opt for something as vile as nuclear power.

  7. WilliamPenn says:

    Every single day the People’s Republic of Pelosiville finds a way to make the rest of the world laugh uproariously with their insanity.

  8. WilliamPenn says:

    Folks, this isn’t about birds at all. It’s about killing capitalism. It’s what communists do.

  9. Ralph McGehee says:

    I wonder if they can pass a liberal safe building standard? Maybe having birds, monkeys, and other animals hanging out over the entrance, and every time a liberal attempted to enter the building, the birds and other animals would defecate all over them. Now that would be a building standard I could endorse.

  10. Bruce Almty says:

    How about allowing hunters to shoot the dumb birds in downtown SF? The city could tax them based on the number of kills. If you don’t have a gun, just ask the ATF, they give them away to Mexican drug gangs for free.

  11. O_M_F_G says:

    I would think that liberals would be in favor of the obvious thinning of the flock and Darwinesque principles at work here.

  12. Leslie says:

    How about a helmet law for birds?

    1. Joe Blow says:

      Helmets would never work, but possibly tiny little airbags, and seat belts might be feasible.

  13. Steve Roberts says:

    Why don’t liberals just mandate the entire world be bubble wrapped and NOBODY does ANYTHING without submitting a plan (with application fee)for govt. approval. Come on libs, just do it. We know that is what you all really want because life is just too dangerous without your supervision.

    1. Ralph McGehee says:

      Can’t do that. They’ve outlawed plastic grocery bags so they certainly won’t want to use all that plastic bubble wrap.

  14. joel says:

    What about the windmills hacking eagles and other raptors apart? I guess a pigeon hitting an office window is more important.

  15. T-man says:

    Well, what can one say? Not wrong to try to fix problems–but the religious liberal left always wants to hang new drapes in the ship’s lounge while the vessel has struck an iceberg and is taking on water!! Priorities are always confused. This is the city that deliberates banning plastic bags, water bottles, changing windows for birds but doesn’t have the moral or civil clarity to curb public nudity or enforce even an underwear code for eating in a restaurant for the unclothed. When you can’t tackle the real issues; there’s always pseudo-altruistic projects to self-justify, self congratulate. Just my opinion.

    1. T-man says:

      Should read: ….but doesn’t have the moral or civil clarity to curb public nudity or enforce even an underwear code for the unclothed eating in a restaurant. (no edit button)

  16. blacknblue2 says:

    One more example that again supports my choice to flee from looney-ville was a very good idea.

  17. LIBS R NUTS says:


  18. tyrcook says:

    There are people in this city with bird brains, too.

  19. Joe D says:

    Just put The Bushman on top of a building and he can scare the birds when they get too close.

  20. Eric says:

    Idea, giant buildings in the shape of giant Owls!

  21. Common Sense is Dead says:

    These idiots prove once again that the cost of “feeeeeeling gooood” is not important. So now, every structure built will have an added price tag…which in turn is money NOT spent on jobs and/or other products, so some bleeding heart tree hugger can feeeeel goooood. Where does it stop?

  22. SHG says:

    The libs will continue to regulate the actual taxpayers right out of the state, and then who will be left to pay for all thier social programs? Wake up libs, it’s a downward spiral.

  23. flashman1854 says:

    The SF Board of Supervisors, if they are really concerned about birds, should at least offer a letter of disagreement for all “wind farms’.

    You know those environmentally friendly alternate energy sources.

    These kill or maim thousands of birds, much more than fly into windows in SF.

    There are two immense wind farms that I know of in CA. One in N. Cal. not far from SF. (One in So. CA. not far from Palm Springs).

    Where is their outrage over this senseless slaughter of innocent birds?

    1. Mad Mike says:

      Oh trust me, there is outrage. You have dueling liberals in the Altamont Pass; the animal rights liberals who are trying to shut the windmills down and the clean energy liberals who want them to keep running. This is why in Liberal Land nothing ever gets done, everyone has their own “cause” which is at odds with each other….

      1. Randy says:

        They libs will eventually devour themselves

  24. duh Man says:

    this coming from the city that has the Castro district. Man-devil sandwich anyone??

  25. Jack says:

    Having to work in this extremely over-rated city you should know that 95% of these idiotic ideas come from people who don’t work, professional activists from outside or typically self-righteous ‘you are entitled to my opinion’ people who are trust fund babies with nothing else to do. We have one of the biggest homeless populations in the country. There is nothing ‘cool’ or ‘superior’ about a city where you get to see aggressive panhandlers and drunks defecating or urinating in the streets when you go to work in the morning.

    1. gnubi says:

      Where do the dead birds go? I’ve never seen one on the sidewalk. Unless they stay stuck to the glass, it can’t be that big of a problem. On the other hand, maybe the city drives them to commit suicide.

  26. Duh Man says:

    How bout we put Pelosi up on the buildings to scare away the birds. I know I’m scared to death of her!!

  27. Duh Man says:

    Please let the south split from the north, California that is…. and they can have Smell A and Hollyweird for free!

  28. sans culottes says:

    Keep your parrots, but please send your jobs to Baltimore. we need them.

  29. TomS says:

    Kookoo! Kookoo! Give those liberals their Cocoa Puffs!

  30. glenp says:

    can they possibly ban such A HOLES from CA GOVTs???

  31. TruePatriotic1 says:

    Nothing in Pelosiville surprises me any more. We have way too much regulation in this country which hurts the economy and job creation.

  32. DJH says:

    I see San Fran continues to prove how utterly clueless and out of touch with reality they are.
    I have a feeling the new standard isn’t going to change things much – they’ll probably outlaw all widows knowing these silly clowns.

  33. Robert Stroud says:

    Birds? Here’s your birds! I got your birds right here!

  34. azakaz says:

    But no one says anything about windmills and birds. They kill birds all the time.

  35. Iconoclast says:

    The real motivation here is to protect the bird-brain lefties from the consequences of their recreational drug use.

  36. Terri Chris says:

    Painting the mailbox while the house is burning.

  37. MrLogical says:

    We’re talking about California…right?

    Enough said.

  38. Craigster says:

    As long as the lunacy stays in California, they can do whatever makes them happy.

    1. Brian says:

      Yeah except…look no further than the California emission standards and the clean air act of 1972 that single handedly destroyed Detroit. Their lunacy sadly affects us all.

  39. chaffer says:

    This will never stop. Liberals thrive on power, control, regulation… on and on and on. Individual freedom is a threat to their coercive utopian way of thinking.

  40. Henry the 8th I am says:

    Hasn’t anyone in SF heard of killing 2 birds with one stone?

    Why don’t they just collect the little mangled critters and send them on their way to one of local fine SF dining establishments. This would reduce the high-cost for these delicacies in an economy that could use a little lift!

    Serving up that little Parrot in a light wine-sauce would free Mz. Irving of her the burden of care while giving someone the pleasure of experiencing a very exotic dish.

  41. Kyle says:

    I live in the Midwest…I went to see 2012 when it came out and the part where California drops into the ocean?

    The whole theater stood up and cheered.

    1. Tyler says:

      @Kyle, this is the same San Fran that wanted to ban pet stores, Pepsi but yet pot shops on every corner was going to be the law.

  42. Rod Anders says:

    I’ve heard that fluoride in drinking water kills little, tiny, baby viruses … and that they die in great pain.

  43. dh says:

    It started in Haight-Ashbury and continues today….just as stupid today as then.

  44. walter12 says:

    These people that are supposely running the city government are completely out of their minds. They are a sick joke upon the nation. SF has become a city of perverts and morons and communists.

  45. Dale says:

    There is absolutely nothing that can prevent me from flipping SF the bird!

  46. Tom in NY says:

    I guess Nancy Pelosi walked into one too many windows after her botox injections.

  47. rlo says:

    We need a Bird Czar. The TSA can have a Bird division to keep suicide sparrows from crashing into windows. Hire all of the crows and grackles as union leaders.

  48. AtlasObjectivist says:

    They really should focus on cleaning up and preventing the homeless from defecating all over the the place before they worry about the birds.

    It’s really a disgusting city.

  49. Steve Turi says:

    SF won’t quit until all animals but humans and the city counsel are left. Then, they’ll pick another for of prey for their idiocy—perhaps the dogs. The dogs will be required to pick up after themselves or use public ditches. BTW, when all the Conservatives flee the city in disgust, you will see the continued disintegration of the city continue even more quickly. RIP a once interesting and historical city.

  50. BrianM says:

    San Francisco is for the birds. Who cares SF is becoming less and less important to California and the United States. SF is the Ron Paul of states!

  51. Grasshopper Junction Az. says:

    What about this surprises anyone another law ruining our country and this law is for the birds and passed by BIRDBRAINS.

  52. jaline says:

    I don’t know whether to laugh…or cry.

  53. TJP says:

    And the big question is – is SF trying to save birds, or is it just trying to feel good about itself? If the latter, it’s doing a bang-up job. If the former, they obviously haven’t looked at at the unintended consequences, which are (a) higher building costs, (b) less buildings and money in SF, (c) more buildings and money in Neanderthal areas like Texas, and (d) no net improvement or maybe even a net loss in bird safety. You can not improve the world one little bit at a time unless the change also saves money OR unless you can force everyone to do it. Environmentalists rarely have any sense of economics (or any common sense, for that matter).

    1. TJP is clueless says:

      i live in Texas, and I am fairly certain that I am smarter than you. The fact that you think Texas is a “Neandrerthal area” is good evidence that you aren’t very bright. Have you ever even been there?

  54. JT says:

    At least some birds fly into objects because they are looking at the ground, not ahead of themselves. Here is a link to the research.

  55. Tigerman says:

    The woman quoted in the article, her name was Judy Irving.
    Nice Irish girl…

  56. Dennis D says:

    They need to pass laws to make San Francisco SAFE from LIBERALs

  57. Dialla Ingalis says:


  58. maudie says:

    How does SF feel about the windmills killing thousands of birds EVERY SINGLE DAY< DAY IN AND DAY OUT< @$ HOURS A DAY< SEVEN DAYS A WEEK?

  59. Yankin yer chain says:

    Wow what a conundrum. Torn between saving wild life and clean wind driven energy. Both pretty vital to the left. Which will you choose? God’s creatures or an idiotic global warming lie perpetuated to force regulations and garner votes. And we KNOW you folks on the left do not believe in God.

  60. IAmAProudAmerican says:

    Let’s just close San Francisco off from the rest of the country. They’ve got one crazy idea after the other that the rest of us just don’t need.

  61. Tyler says:

    Lets close them off and let Pelosi be there queen!

  62. Me says:

    What’s next…..bug safe sidewalks?

  63. Cogiito says:

    The Leftist cretins are on schedule to legislate virtually every action a human being can make. Next will be to legislate how many squares of T.P. you can use. Don’t laugh! By the time you are done it will be law. Of course, the laws of the land need not be enforced, if the massa doesn’t agree with them.

  64. Stan_LA says:

    Why don’t they just put up a couple wind mills around the buildings, that way the whirling blade of death can hack the birds to pieces as they bounce off the windows!

  65. John says:

    Please someone commit the loonies

  66. Mike says:

    Knock knock.
    Who there?
    Nobody …nobody who?
    Nobody sane in this state.

    1. Joe Greenwell says:

      Knock knock
      Whose There?
      Nobody….nobody who”
      Nobody cares about crazy San Francisco. It cant slide into the North Pacific quickly enough.

  67. Joe Greenwell says:

    Natural Selection some lose some win. Oh forget this is a democrat sanctuary. Why don’t that just coat the windows with that new film that reduces heat transfer? Or just tent them cheap ole brown. It will create jobs.

  68. Joe Greenwell says:

    Just thought about something. Why don’t they care about those bird guillotines called wind mills.

  69. LMAO… SOmebody get a net. Thanks San Francisco for answering the age old question….
    “How insane can man be?”

  70. Jerzey Boy says:

    How about a Bull Safe government!

  71. Larry Campbell says:

    Remember the whole mess with the spotted owl up in Oregon? The tree huggers said that the spotted owl could not nest anywhere except a 100 year old forest. They took it to court and the logging industry in that part of Oregon died. So did the town or towns surrounding that logging area. A film crew got film of a spotted owl that had built a nest in a broken K-Mart sign. The type that sits way up in the air. That should have been used to sue the environmentalists and the tree huggers and the pseudo scientists for everything they had and everything they would ever earn. But that didn’t happen. I don’t know how or why, but these nut jobs are almost always allowed to win, or at least it seems that way.

  72. Allen Ross says:

    Obviously these birds need training. Given the urgency of the situation the CA Employment Development Department should immediately grant these fledgling birds taxpayer funded benefits as soon as the bird attends the first class.

  73. gerry says:

    why don’t we just educate the birds to read caution signs and then place these signs in strategic places where the birds can easily and safely read them… C,mon people… it’s not that hard…

  74. Kevin Conklin says:

    No wonder Nancy looks so surprised all the time. The Dodo bird hit too many windows. Bugs look like that when they fly into my windshield on the highway. SF sucks! Pardon the pun.

  75. Brewskie says:

    This is an Onion piece, right?

    1. Brian says:

      Even they couldn’t make this kind of stupid up.

  76. KenC2ShiningC says:

    The Chokecherry-Sierra Madre project will slice and dice more birds, butterflies, bees and bats with 1000 monstrous turbines containing a million tons of concrete, fiberglass and heavy metals spread across some 320,000 acres (over ten times the size of SF) of sage grouse habitat and BLM land in Wyoming. California has these monsters located in just about every migratory pass up and down the state. More green building codes in SF? It’s all about growing government, not protecting the environment . More regulations, more government employees to police those regulations.

  77. princetrumpet says:

    It seems there is no idea strange or stupid enough to be proposed in San Fransisco.

  78. Jon says:

    What about the wind mills? don’t they kill millons of birds ….

  79. hmrhonda says:

    If you really want to save birds and save the planet from insects and pesticides(disease causing chemicals) (to replace insect eating birds) one must campaign to stop the expansion and implementation of wind farms. They kill hundreds of thousands of birds a year. The birds can’t reproduce fast enough. Much more damage to the environment than from the oil spill.
    Once again, the pursuit of a politically correct agenda without regard to unintended consequences.

    I am all for birds. Stop the huge windmills.

    1. Brian says:

      Liberals are never judged on results…Only good intentions.

  80. Geoff says:

    Will the freaks in SF require Windmill Farms to be “birdsafe”? Of course not! Windmills kill thousands of raptors every year, including federally protected eagles. Why didn’t the authors of this article ask SF “officials” that that question? Because they are hypocrites that’s why.

  81. CAmom says:

    I’m a third generation Californian who is embarassed about what my state has become. We used to be the best – now we’re a laughingstock.