The impacts of wind turbines on birds have been discussed in Germany for almost 25 years now. The current practices in the planning process for wind farms can be characterized as a mixture of scientifically based knowledge and precautionary assumptions. The basic principle of mitigating the impacts of wind farms on certain species of high conservation concern is to maintain a sufficient distance between wind turbines and breeding sites or important roosting areas. This paper uses examples of certain species of concern to illustrate the current knowledge and practice of mitigating impacts on birds in Germany. The results demonstrate that, in some cases, the impact is not as severe as originally assumed and that micrositing of turbines can be a powerful tool to minimize possible effects. In view of the growing number of wind turbines operating in Germany, the adequate assessment of cumulative impacts is a key issue. In addition, there is growing pressure to improve and demonstrate the effectiveness of mitigation measures. Future research should be focused on long-term effects and on population-level impacts.