Was working in the coop today and heard a car door out front. I do not know why, but I had a sick feeling in my stomach. The code enforcement officer was in my driveway. He gave me two weeks to remove the hens from my property. He explained the city does not search out these types incidences, and only come out if there is a complaint. I told him that I thought chickens were ok. He said no fowl. I questioned his meaning of "fowl". He said anything with feathers. I have been keeping 5 hens for eggs. I went to all of my neighbors before I began construction, and all were supportive and excited for me. My coop/run are set off the property lines and instead of just throwing something together rag tag style, I went out of my way to make the set up as appealing to the eye as possible. There has not been any smells (yet?), and very little noise. I emailed the city manager and explained my situation, he seemed sympathetic, but in the end the code is the code... He said the issue has been brought up in the past, but he does not see the codes changing in the near future.
Here is how it is written.
It shall be unlawful for any animal of the equine species, cow, calf, bull, boar, swine, goat, other livestock, fowl, or dangerous and vicious animal of any species to be stabled, kept, or housed in the corporate limits or to be allowed or permitted to run in or on any of the public thoroughfares, squares, or enclosed lands, or other public lots of the city, and it shall be the duty of persons designated to enforce this chapter on information or view to cause the same to be impounded; nor shall such animal be restored to the owner until such owner shall pay as hereafter provided for each and every such animal and the cost of impounding, provided that before impounding any mischievous animal, whose owner may be known to the impounding officer, the impounding officer shall notify such owner to keep such animal confined, and if thereafter such animal is found upon the thoroughfares, squares, unenclosed land or lots at large, the animal shall be impounded without notice, as provided in this section.
While a lot of people keep chickens as pets/hobbies etc, These chickens provided a source of food for my family. They were part of a small homestead i was trying to build for our future. I have been disabled for three years and unable to work. I have not looked to my government for help with my problems. I was only hoping I would be left alone to mind my business, and squeak out an life for my family. At the time I did not think to ask, but if fowl by the code enforcement officers definition means anything with feathers, Does that mean no parrots,doves, and parakeets as well?
Any advice or help would be appreciated.
Edited by 2inspireuhomest - 5/7/14 at 8:42am