Can Feeding Pigeons Get You in Trouble with the Law?

It sure can, if the birds turn out to be a major safety hazard for airplanes at a nearby airport.

Here's the story of how 59-year-old business owner (and bird lover) Charles Douglas got arrested over a flock of pigeons:

Airport police Cmdr. Allen Schmitt said a plane strikes a bird at the airport once every two months on average. But the rate of strikes has increased recently, with five incidents in July alone, he added.

"Most of those were multiple — 10 to 20 to 30 birds at once," Schmitt said. "Now it's becoming extraordinarily dangerous."

In July, a Southwest Airlines flight was diverted to Ontario after it flew into 20 to 30 pigeons during takeoff, he said.

"A pigeon is not a problem, but a flock — that's a problem," he said.

Douglas' arrest was the culmination of months of legal wrangling to stop the feeding.

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Why in the world would someone feed pigeons? Does that guy also leave food out for rats and cockroaches? It's not like the pigeons are starving and can't find their own food.
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