Saturday, February 7, 2009

Husbandry: Raising Backyard Chickens

Interested in raising chickens in your backyard?

First, check your local zoning laws, which determine what residents can and can’t do in their yards. Sometimes those laws, especially in cities and suburbs, don’t allow “farm” animals, chickens among them. Why? Fear of noise and too much poop.

The good news: Some cities do allow chickens, though usually there are limits, such as no roosters (kind of noisy), only so many hens (like no more than six or 10), and setbacks for the chicken coop (a certain distance from your neighbor’s house).

Other towns may soon lighten up their laws. Why? To help more people grow more of their own food. Cleveland, Ohio, is one of them.

Kurt Knebusch
Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center
Ohio State University Extension

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