Originally Posted by ChickenBiffer
I know him well. He is a control freak who tried to prevent me from having chickens in the first place because (quote) "How do I know you know anything about animal husbandry?" and "You should have talked to me first." He is the guy who has to hire someone to screw in a lightbulb for him (i.e. he knows NOTHING about "animal husbandry" or anything else) and for the last ten years he has seethed with envy over every home project my husband and I have been able to DIY. That's who he is, so basically it drives him nuts that we've got this cool thing happening in our backyard that everyone thinks is cool and prompts compliments from everyone who sees it (our setup is really lovely-- the coop and small run resemble a house with attached gazebo). Yeah, this is not a matter of reasoning with him, it's a matter of hoping that no one would see things his way.
I am definitely shopping for a shrubbery/plant barrier for this summer for sure, it's just a matter of figuring out what will grow best/fastest in that gap. It creeps me out that he has nothing better to do than stand in his backyard taking pictures of mine.
Oh yeah, I've had encounters with people just like that many times. When we lived at our first house we had a lady neighbor that was all too proud to know everyone's business and couldn't stand to see anyone else put anything nice on their property. She complained about my vegetable garden, my modular garage, and anything she could. We had a hurricane pass through and it downed the power pole behind her yard so I ran a temporary wire setup to her house power since our power wasn't affected (I worked for the local utility). She wasn't any nicer afterwards though because the utility had to drive a truck in my yard to set the new pole and cracked up my walkway, and when I filed a claim she said the sidewalk was already like that even though it wasn't. She even had a survey done because she thought the fence (her fence) that separated our two properties should have been a few inches more on my side. Some people just don't have anything better to do and want everyone else to be as miserable as they are. I had a couple of neighbors like that over the years so I moved to as big a property as we could swing for the time being, and now I'm just hangin' in there until we retire and can move out to the country.
Anyway, I'm digressing quite a bit. Yeah, I agree that it wouldn't do any good to try talking to him. I'd just put up a barrier and probably put together a good sized run so you're not violating and ordinances. If you do that he won't be able to see what your gals are doing and even if he complained he wouldn't have any leverage since you'd be meeting all the requirements. I'm sorry you have to live next to a guy like that. Don't let yourself fall into the same misery trap as him though because if it wasn't your hens it'd be something else. I do know how you feel though. That fella needs to be worked over by a good, ****** off rooster.