The first 10 Birds descended on Santa Monica, California, in early September 2017. Within days, this small migration became more like an invasion. Soon, locals woke to see Birds scattered across the city's sidewalks and bike paths and on the boardwalk at Venice Beach--some 250 e-scooters left by the fledgling startup Bird Rides, along with instructions on how to rent them using an app. No one had invited Bird to Santa Monica. There were also no laws that specifically banned (or permitted) Bird's business--the closest were the city's regulations governing sidewalk food stands.