City Ordinance: Urban Chickens

CHAPTER 87
URBAN CHICKENS

87.01 Purpose
87.02 Definition
87.03 Site Requirements
87.04 Chicken Requirements
87.05 Coop Requirements
87.06 Pen Requirements

87.01 PURPOSE. The purpose of this chapter is to allow and regulate the keeping of urban chickens:


87.02 DEFINITION. For use in this chapter, the following terms are defined:

  1. “Chicken” means a member of the subspecies Gallus gallus domesticus, a domesticated fowl.
  2. “Coop” means a cage, enclosure or building used for housing and protecting chickens from weather and predators.
  3. “Pen” means an enclosure for chickens which allows freedom of movement but also prevents escape.
  4. “Rooster” means a male chicken.

87.03 SITE REQUIREMENTS. Unless specified elsewhere in this chapter, the following requirements shall apply:

  1. The property must be a single-family residence.
  2. A tenant must obtain the landlord’s written permission to install a coop
  3. Coops and pens shall be located only in the rear yard.
  4. Coops cannot be within 25 feet from any neighboring habitable structure.
  5. Coops cannot be located within 5 feet of the habitable structure on the owner’s property.
  6. Coops cannot be located within 8 feet of the property line.

87.04 CHICKEN REQUIREMENTS. Unless specified elsewhere in this chapter, the following requirements shall apply:

  1. Maximum number of chickens allowed is six (6) hens
  2. Roosters are prohibited
  3. Chickens must be housed in the coop from dusk to dawn.
  4. Slaughtering of a chicken is prohibited.
  5. Selling of eggs and chickens is prohibited.
  6. Chicken breeding or fertilizer production is not allowed.
  7. All feed and other items associated with the keeping of chickens shall be protected in a manner to prevent rodents from gaining access to or coming into contact with them.
  8. Adequate food, water and shelter shall be provided at all times.
  9. A chicken that is outside the pen is “at large” in violation of City Code.

87.05 COOP REQUIREMENTS.

  1. Coops shall be constructed, repaired, and maintained in a manor to prevent rodents from being harbored underneath or within the wall of the enclosures.
  2. Coops shall be built of solid materials such as wood, metal or plastic.  The materials used shall be uniform for each element of the structure such that the walls are made of the same material, the roof has the same shingles or other covering, and windows or openings are constructed using the same material.
  3. Coops shall have at least one solid door and window that can provide adequate ventilation.
  4. A minimum of 4 square feet of space shall be provided per bird inside a coop.
  5. Coops shall be maintained to ensure proper sanitation for maintaining the health of the chickens and the keepers.  Chickens found to be infested with insects and parasites may be removed by a person designated by the Council with the assistance of the City Police, if necessary.
  6. Feces shall be removed and disposed of in a sealed, enclosed container at a minimum of once weekly to avoid odor.  Fecal matter may be used as fertilizer if turned completely into the soil at least once weekly and there is no noxious odor.
  7. Coop shall be built in a well-drained area to prevent standing water.

87.06 PEN REQUIREMENTS.

  1. There shall be a minimum of 4 square feet of space per chicken.
  2. Shall be fenced at least 4 feet high and constructed of wood, chicken wire, or heavy gauge mesh wire.
  3. Feces shall be removed and disposed of in a sealed, enclosed container at a minimum of once weekly to avoid odor.  Fecal matter may be used as fertilizer if turned completely into the soil at least once weekly and there is no noxious odor.