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Maryland - Baltimore County vs Baltimore City

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I live in Baltimore County and would love to own a few hens. However, Baltimore County code says "A person may not house or maintain within a residential area less than 1 acre in size: Fowl, including chickens, ducks, and geese"

In Baltimore City, the code allows up to four chickens (no roosters) to be kept as long as they are confined to a movable pen that is kept 25 feet away from any residence.

Baltimore City code favors backyard chickens, and has very specific requirements for owners to follow.

Here are the links to both codes:
Baltimore County: § 13-7-311. HOUSING OF FOWL AND LIVESTOCK
Baltimore City: Health Department Regulations

I have started a website at www.charmcitychickens.com to help build support for changing the Baltimore County code to something similar to what Baltimore City has in place.  If anyone is interested in supporting this, you can visit the website and sign up with your email address.  I am still in the process of building the site, so please feel free to offer any comments or suggestions.

Jay

Baltimore County does not allow me to own chickens on my property, because it is less than an acre!
www.charmcitychickens.com
Reply
Baltimore County does not allow me to own chickens on my property, because it is less than an acre!
www.charmcitychickens.com
Reply
post #2 of 9
Thread Starter 

I have emailed the Baltimore County council, as well as state representatives, and Extension Specialist and Veteranarian for their opinions on the matter,  To date, I have received the following replies:

Email reply from Extension Veteranarian:
"I appreciate your interest in raising chickens. However, I regret that as an Extension Specialist, University of Maryland faculty, and State employee, I cannot get involved in political issues (such as challenging existing laws) at any level. I believe your case can and should be handled directly by Baltimore County and your Homeowners Association."

Phone call from Dutch Ruppersberger's office stating that they don't get into county code issues.

Email reply from County Executive Jim Smith's office:
"Thank you for you interest and concern regarding the current County Code's for fowl and livestock within Baltimore County, to the County Executive. He always appreciates hearing from constituents and the opportunity to assist. I have forwarded your e-mail to the Department of Permits and Development Management for research and response. You should expect a response within two weeks with further details. Thank you for contacting our office on this matter."

Jay

Baltimore County does not allow me to own chickens on my property, because it is less than an acre!
www.charmcitychickens.com
Reply
Baltimore County does not allow me to own chickens on my property, because it is less than an acre!
www.charmcitychickens.com
Reply
post #3 of 9

Did you get any further replies?

post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 

Tash,

We did receive a few more replies from current Council members, but the response was cold at best. Now that we are in the process of electing a new Council, the focus has been on the candidates. We have a small group of people who are actively involved in emailing the candidates, and about 25 more folks who are receiving my election updates as responses come in. We actually received many supportive responses from the primary candidates, but now we need to see who's left and really focus on getting the right people in office! Feel free to check out our website (www.charmcitychickens.com). I haven't had a lot of time to update the site, but if you sign up for the email list, you will receive updates. Once the new council is elected, we will meet as a group and start formulating a plan to go before the new council.

Jay

Baltimore County does not allow me to own chickens on my property, because it is less than an acre!
www.charmcitychickens.com
Reply
Baltimore County does not allow me to own chickens on my property, because it is less than an acre!
www.charmcitychickens.com
Reply
post #5 of 9

Hey Jay,
I live in Ruxton so our rules are different even though we are in Baltimore country also I have more then one acre. But if you need a coop and run to come look at mine would work. I have a large movable coop. I am in college now but will be home over winter break and also spring break. I also breed so I have roosters but it seems to be working alright.

Henry

Faverolles Fanciers Club, Susquehanna Poultry Club, and Ameraucana Breeders Club.
Check out the new Faverolles Fanciers website http://faverollesfanciers.webs.com/
Reply
Faverolles Fanciers Club, Susquehanna Poultry Club, and Ameraucana Breeders Club.
Check out the new Faverolles Fanciers website http://faverollesfanciers.webs.com/
Reply
post #6 of 9

When Baltimore county changed the law they added pigeons to the list of poultry that you need an acre of land to keep. If someone already had a coop before the law was changed it was grandfathered in. I was lucky enough to meet a fancier at the Hamilton Homing Pigeon club that already had a loft on his property for over 20 years. He also has 3 acres so he's safe both ways. He lets me keep my show pigeons there in trade for help around the loft. He's an older man that had a stroke so he can't do stuff as well as he used to.

You might want to talk with people from the Hamilton  or South Baltimore homer clubs to see if they've had any sucsess. I'm trying to reform the Baltimore show pigeon club. It broke up with infighting a few years back.

I also live in Middle River. In the trailer park across from Bengies.

Dragoons, American Show Racers, LFCL Tumblers and Racing Homers.
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Dragoons, American Show Racers, LFCL Tumblers and Racing Homers.
Reply
post #7 of 9

Any updates ? I live in Baltimore County ( Towson) and thinking of getting "Back Yard" Chickens but I dont own an ACRE of land. But I do live in a single home. 

post #8 of 9

THERE IS A HEARING REGARDING BACKYARD CHICKENS IN BALTIMORE COUNTY!!!! PLEASE CONSIDER ATTENDING!!!

 

Pasturing and Stabling of Livestock – Public Input Meeting

A community input meeting is being held on Thursday, March 20, at 6 p.m. in Room 104, Jefferson Building, 105 W. Chesapeake Avenue in Towson, to gain input on the non-commercial raising and keeping of livestock, fowl or poultry on residential lots less than one acre, Council Resolution 73-13.

Please bring a written copy of your testimony to the hearing. Two minutes will be given to each speaker.

Information: Contact Jessie Bialek at jbialek@baltimorecountymd.gov or 410-887-3480

post #9 of 9

Man, I feel like I missed the most important ship to be on!  I was recently turned on to the idea of urban chickening and some Googling led me to this thread.  Needless to say, as a Rosedale resident I was disappointed to learn of Baltimore County's current code.  I can't find out anywhere on the county website the current status of the council resolution.  Following the public meeting back in March, has there been any updates?

 

Thanks!

Joe

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