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Virginia Beach, VA - Backyard Chickens?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

Hey Everyone!

Anyone know VA Beach laws?!

Where do I go to find out if I'm zoned correctly? And how do I figure out if I need a permit?

I want CHICKENS! I raised chickens my whole life and just got married and moved to VA Beach back in Feb.

I REALLY miss my chickens! I finally bought a house that has a cute little fenced backyard (it is a row townhome though so it's around quite a few people).

I want a little bantam cochin - just one!

Can someone please help me out? I'm really tired of searching online and not finding anything out!


Thanks!!

Wife to the most loving, caring, and "accepting" (of my animal obsession!) husband! Love him to pieces! 

Mommy-to-be of a beautiful little baby!! <3 I am BEYOND excited!! 

Animal Mommy to Silkies, Cochins, and English Angora Bunnies! They are my passion! 

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Wife to the most loving, caring, and "accepting" (of my animal obsession!) husband! Love him to pieces! 

Mommy-to-be of a beautiful little baby!! <3 I am BEYOND excited!! 

Animal Mommy to Silkies, Cochins, and English Angora Bunnies! They are my passion! 

Reply
post #2 of 13

Here's some info from the BYC LORE pages.

http://www.backyardchickens.com/laws/display.php?State=VA&City=Virginia+Beach&actions=search

Make sure to check on them

Good luck

Imp

 

 

If all the beasts were gone, men would die from a great loneliness of spirit,

for whatever happens to the beasts also happens to the man.

All things are connected.
Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of the Earth.

 

       ― Chief Seattle

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If all the beasts were gone, men would die from a great loneliness of spirit,

for whatever happens to the beasts also happens to the man.

All things are connected.
Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of the Earth.

 

       ― Chief Seattle

Reply
post #3 of 13

va beach has some weird laws, since it's so reliant on tourism... i never lived there though. try googling va beach poultry regulations or some other combination of official-sounding words, if the site's URL ends in .gov then you're good. or you could call up animal control or somebody and inquire. smile

The girl silversmith! Shiny things! Pretty rocks! I sell handmade jewelry to support my homesteading habit:
http://metalsmitten.etsy.com for my main portfolio, or http://www.LT3omg.com for <3 <3 Less Than Three OMG <3 <3

Currently keepin' up with a flock of mutt chickens, six turkeys, four Nigerian Dwarf goats, a rescued pitbull and a lot of rescued cats.
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The girl silversmith! Shiny things! Pretty rocks! I sell handmade jewelry to support my homesteading habit:
http://metalsmitten.etsy.com for my main portfolio, or http://www.LT3omg.com for <3 <3 Less Than Three OMG <3 <3

Currently keepin' up with a flock of mutt chickens, six turkeys, four Nigerian Dwarf goats, a rescued pitbull and a lot of rescued cats.
Reply
post #4 of 13

The bad news is that backyard chickens are illegal in Virginia Beach unless you are zoned for agriculture. It is a $250 fine if you are cited.

 

The good news is that we just started a group called "4 Virginia Beach Hens" to follow Chesapeake's lead and work with city council to make hens legal in Virginia Beach. We already have over 110 Likes on FB and we have our first meeting in December. Please join us if you would like to help.  http://www.facebook.com/4VirginiaBeachHens

post #5 of 13

We went and spoke at the Virginia Beach city council meeting tonight during the open forum time. Two of us spoke for 3 minutes each after official business. We had a really good crew there, as you can see from the picture. The huge show of support had an impact. We had conversations with a couple of the council members afterward and it looks like they are willing to help us draft an ordinance to bring before city council for official business.


I don't know the timeline for this type of thing, but I am hoping that we will have more information in time for our next planning meeting on January 29th. The results tonight were very positive. It was exciting to get positive feedback right away, but even one of the sympathetic councilmen said he had concerns. We need to continue to grow our support so that we can have an even larger crowd at city council when backyard hens gets on the agenda.

 

If anyone here is in Virginia Beach, or has friends and relatives in Virginia Beach, point them our way! http://www.facebook.com/4VirginiaBeachHens

 

 

*

post #6 of 13

I shot Bryan Stevenson an email on FB regarding the Mayor's reply to my request for support regarding the backyard chicken initiative. The Mayor was quick to respond to my original email, however said he would not give his support to the cause. His concerns were two-fold - (1) the expectations of a "normal" residential lifestyle and chickens do not mix and (2) not all people can be expected to responsibly manage and provide upkeep of a flock.

 

While I appreciate his quick and candid response, his answers were a bit brash and without substantive merit. I get the feeling most of the opposition from him and council members is more about not knowing vs. personal experience. Only one of the council members can truly say she was a farm hand at one point in her life. I could understand this level of naivety before the invention of the Internet, but a quick education in the truth is only a few keystrokes away. I also think pending cases involving Ms. Okroy have tainted the initiative (plus city govt doesn't want to do a 180 while her case is pending in state court).

 

First, VB is trying to create a sense of new-age urbanism (town center, sandler center, light rail, arena deals) but doesn't want any country in the mix, despite the city being a farming community before incorporation as a city 50 years ago. Normal expectations would include safety/security, sufficient infrastructure and services, schooling, and responsive city govt. I don't see how a small flock of chickens would negatively affect any of the aforementioned. Secondly, no law or ordinance is followed by every person in the community. Compliance is assumed, requested, and appreciated but never fully achieved. This is why we have police and code enforcement officials...  
 


Edited by FenikT - 1/8/13 at 7:43pm
post #7 of 13

We visited the Virginia Beach city council meeting for the 2nd time this Tuesday. Things are looking positive. We are working with Councilman DeSteph on the proposed ordinance and it will be going to the Planning Commission soon. We had one of our active high school students speak this time, and it went over very well. Attached is the video of her speech, along with the transcript. Enjoy!

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2j3tIjjqLRs

post #8 of 13

If you live in Pungo or Blackwater areas of Virginia Beach you can have chickens any other place and you will have to wait. The city counsel moves slow. Good luck.
 

post #9 of 13

This si very intresting I hope you are able to change the laws to allow hens. 

 

My Aunt lives in VA Beach and is getting some hens, but plans on keeping them where she keeps her sheep in Chesapeake.  It would sure be nice if she could keep them at her house!

 

2 Paso Fino geldings, 3 Border Collies, Welsh Harlequin Ducks, Swedish Flower Hens,  Seramas

 

 

 

WYGS Page: http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/herducks-wygs-page

 

Swap Page  http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/herducks-swap-page

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2 Paso Fino geldings, 3 Border Collies, Welsh Harlequin Ducks, Swedish Flower Hens,  Seramas

 

 

 

WYGS Page: http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/herducks-wygs-page

 

Swap Page  http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/herducks-swap-page

Reply
post #10 of 13

We worked with Councilman DeSteph and we have an ordinance drafted and going in front of the Planning Commission in March. It allows for 6 hens in a single family backyard. We're still working out some of the details, but those are the basics. I'll keep this thread updated with the latest and you can also join us on Facebook to follow along and help out. http://www.facebook.com/4VirginiaBeachHens

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