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Hillsborough County, Florida: Legalize Backyard Chickens!

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

Hello! I'm quite new to this site [only joined yesterday!] and l would like to work on expending the Tampa ordinance [backyard chickens are allowed in tampa, but not the rest of the county!] to include all of the county. I haven't found any recent posts for it, nothing within the last year.  I have found a few, but all are generally older. I am determined to get this changed! 


I would love to have a small flock of chickens to call my own, without the risk of someone deciding they didn't like them and turning me in.


These links are some of the information I've already gathered. I looked into the county legal site, and it seems the only way to speak to them is by actually attending a meeting, But I'd want to have someone championing the petition. the existence of the petition is meaningless if no one knows about it. this petition states several valid points, so it's a good point of reference. 


The Tampa ordinance is to bring up so that the specifics have already been written up, and the only change is to expand the range of that ordinance. 


I could use all the help I can get, so if any Hillsborough residents want to help make a change, I'm all ears.


Thank you!

post #2 of 17

Ijust sent an email to BOCC

post #3 of 17

I'm curious what the response was from the BOCC. Did you hear anything in reply?

post #4 of 17

Nothing yet. (My husband sent the info)  One of the commissioners hadn't heard there was a petition and requested links and more info, so my husband sent it, but that was as far as we've heard.  It may need to be brought up to the board officially before anything more can be done.

post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 

I got a call a while back and was actively discouraged, being told that most of the commissioners are against the legalization. The only way to bring it to their full attention would be to actually attend a meeting and provide evidence in favor of the claim... and stuff.


I'm very bad about public speaking, I would not do well, I'd be too intimidated.. I kind of stopped there, since I didn't know where to get help with it. HERE I GUESS? But I don't know where to go to...

post #6 of 17

I sent message to Bonnie Cantrell, the creator of the petition. I asked her if it is going to be done something with or is it a dead petition. I am not one who can do what she has told me some people need to do. I do wish someone would pick this up and go with it. I will support the efforts in any way I can but I am not public speaker. I get sick to my stomach at the very idea of having to communicate with the commissioners and this is what they are all probably banking on - the fact that many of us dont even have the nerve to speak. 

I am having to send my four pet hens and two pet roosters off to my mom's to live - I have had them for four years and no complaints. My neighbor is a retired code enforcer and takes great pleasure in being the reporter of the neighborhood. He didnt even complain until two families, one block down the road, zoned agricultural, let their chickens go free. The chickens have spread out from one end of the neighborhood to gradually migrating in groups on through the neighborhood - one block from my house is agricultural but I am zoned residential.

This retired code enforcer took it for granted that these many free range chickens that have ended up around our block have come from my little bitty group of quiet chickens. My roosters are not even very loud and I have them housed so their sound doesnt echo all over the neighborhood. These free range chickens are most certainly not mine and they are most certainly not contained to fill my little chicken house designed for the exact amount of pet chickens I have.

My chickens are my pets and I love them and I am very sick, heartbroken. That retired code enforcer had his buddy out - and I know it is his buddy because one day, the truck was at the retired enforcers house. The next day, the truck sat across the street watching my house for four hours. The next day, the truck was at my house to tell me I cant have housed chickens.

When I bought my home, I got a United States Department of Agriculture loan and was provided a map to go and choose a home zoned agricultural. I was told no deed restrictions here and I could even have my pet chickens in a house. Now, four years later and because a retired enforcer sees all of the free range chickens and just assumes they surely must be mine, I am told I am zoned not to be allowed to have my pet chickens.

Those free range chickens are not mine. They are not my responsibility at all whatsoever, not even to try to get them out of here, as if I could really get a bunch of feral chickens to leave hahaha And I know exactly where they came from but I am not a tattle tale and I am not going to tell who let those chickens go.

However, everybody else around here knows that those chickens just showed up and have worked their way in groups through the neighborhood. Everybody else knows that nobody owns those chickens -- only the stupid retired code enforcer has taken upon himself to think he knows they are mine --- what a blooming idiot!!

So, I have been in bed sick with major depression since October 14, 2015 - when I was told I cant have my pet chickens here. It is now October 20, 2015. I want my pet chickens. I love them. This has me so sick. I cant explain but it is horrible. Someone please do something. I live in Thonotosassa -- come on!! This is Hickville USA even worse than Plant City!! And I grew up in Plant City and my family in Thonotosassa. Hickville USA - one block from agricultural zoned land and I cant have my pet chickens.

Here is the reply from Bonnie, the creator of the petition that may go nowhere because nobody will take it up ...

For me, unfortunately, other life things have popped up that has stopped me from being very active in the pursuit of this. I have been hoping that others would pick up the reins. This will require lots of communication with the Hillsborough County Commissioners and early morning visits to the County Commissioners office and isn't something I'm capable of doing.


Edited by CherryBobbery - 10/20/15 at 6:51pm
post #7 of 17

.... booboo here 

Edited by CherryBobbery - 10/20/15 at 7:01pm
post #8 of 17
Originally Posted by CherryBobbery View Post

.... booboo h

I'm not too far from you in Lakeland...... I did some searching for you ....and this could be a strech....BUT fill out an application for the Captive Wildlife Pet Permit with the FWFG. It's free...and worth a shot. I think you mentioned either here or another post they are endangered breeds, correct? Make sure you call attention to that.   

Another....did you mention that you cannot "House" chickens? Could your birds free-range at the time the jerk comes to watch or make it appear they now free range?

I am addicted to Silkies... LUV that fluff. I raise White, Black, Blue,Splash, Partridge, Buff, Cuckoo Silkies and NN's. Member of the American Silkie Bantam Club and NPIP participant # 58-2009-E. 
I am addicted to Silkies... LUV that fluff. I raise White, Black, Blue,Splash, Partridge, Buff, Cuckoo Silkies and NN's. Member of the American Silkie Bantam Club and NPIP participant # 58-2009-E. 
post #9 of 17
Originally Posted by CherryBobbery View Post

.... booboo here 

Check this out I typed in the address for the library in Thononassassa and the USDA site said that that property is eligible for the loan program. Do you still have the paper work or the map that says you can have chickens? Also, is your morgage with the USDA? Then the USDA owns your property right? See if that can take you anywhere....

I am addicted to Silkies... LUV that fluff. I raise White, Black, Blue,Splash, Partridge, Buff, Cuckoo Silkies and NN's. Member of the American Silkie Bantam Club and NPIP participant # 58-2009-E. 
I am addicted to Silkies... LUV that fluff. I raise White, Black, Blue,Splash, Partridge, Buff, Cuckoo Silkies and NN's. Member of the American Silkie Bantam Club and NPIP participant # 58-2009-E. 
post #10 of 17

The loan obtained for my home was a USDA loan and they provided a map of agricultural land for the area I was to choose my home from. The agent who handled the loan process told me I could have chickens because the map shows this entire area as agricultural land. I dont have the map but it is on the internet somewhere because they directed me to it online so I could house search. However, the way it works with a USDA loan is that the government provides the loan long enough for you to purchase a home and then the loan is sold so the goverment gets their money back and my loan was sold to Wells Fargo Bank and that is now who I pay my house payment to.



I cant let my chickens free range at all. These actual free range chickens out here will run my own chickens out of their own yard and I am afraid for my little bantam rooster. I guess I could be afraid for my big rooster too. If these free range roosters jumped my big rooster, it would be one heck of a fight but oh what a horrible fight it would be and I dont want any rooster killed. As for my bantam, the free range roosters and my big rooster might all attack him and he will be done for dead. And I dont know what would happen to my hens. It is too dangerous to let mine free range at all. Also, if I even could let them free range for a bit, as soon as my neighbor sees they are in the house he will report it again.

What really stinks about this whole thing and makes absolutely no sense at all is ---- I have had my housed chickens here for four years, no complaints, and the jerk beside me even tried to make nice conversation about my chickens with me, of which I was nice just to keep peace. The free range chickens showed up and so he complains and tells his code and zoning buddy that I am housing all of these chickens.

I can pretty much figure out what took place. My stupid, ignorant jerk retired code and zoning enforcer for a neighbor probably didnt realize that I was not allowed housed chickens or he would have put in to get rid of them from the git go and that just because he has tried to harass me for four years because I told him and his wife to please leave me alone about gossiping at the fence and telling me what I should be doing to my plants, my lawn, my everything. And so when he called his zoning buddy he then learned nothing could be done about free range chickens so the buttwipe probably told his zoning buddy that I house all of these chickens with thinking that would make me responsible to get rid of every single chicken, the free range and my own.

His buddy comes out here and clearly sees what I have housed. He tells me there is nothing that he can do about the free range chickens but I am not allowed to have housed chickens. It isnt even my housed chickens that the jerk was complaining about but it is my housed chickens that have to go because the jerk figured out he had to say they are all housed in his effort to make me responsible for the free ranged chickens by making it sound like they are not free range and they belong to me. He is a gossiping liar and has been since the first day we moved here.

There should be a law against buttwipes using reporting as a personal vendetta against someone. My jerkwad neighbor should pay a penalty for trying to force someone to hang at the fence for his gossiping lies and for bugging someone to death every single time they step out into their yard with being so nosy about every move that is made. 

And so why not have housed chickens???? It is the free range chickens the stupid people dont want around out here so why not house chickens??? And if ya stop and think about it, every single thing the government sticks their hands into turns out to be
bassackwards and this is just one more thing they have done something totally stupid about. 



I will give the wildlife thing a try but I really dont think that will work. Hillsborough County has their crap written in such a way that a chicken is nothing but a farm animal, period. They do not acknowledge that they can be pets. They do not acknowledge that all chickens are not just chickens. They do not acknowledge any special breeds. To them, a chicken is a farm animal, period. Even if I had a permit the county says I am not allowed to house chickens, which they must be a bunch of cold hearted people because they dont comprehend that chickens can be pets and loved just like any dog or cat is loved and the depression of taking them away from those who love them is real and makes a person very very sick to where they can hardly even function.

This has me so extremely sick. I am in such a major depression and trying to function enough to get a place built over at my Mom's for my chickens and trying to maintain my home and yard and all other responsibility. I am struggling to get out of bed. There is no way out. I cant sell my home for what I paid for it, much less for enough to have money to get another house. I dont want to live here any more. I am willing to let it go back to the bank and go rent somewhere but my husband wont do that. So now I wait for somebody to die - me, my neighbor or my husband -- this is my only way out. I die - I am out. My neighbor dies - my chickens come back. My husband dies - I get to move.

These neighbors right here around me have been nothing but gossiping buttholes since the first day we moved here. I have never in my life lived around such people as this and I am 53, almost 54 years old and I have lived in a lot of places and this is my fourth time buying a home. This is like some horror movie here with these people. Something is woefully wrong with these people!! I aint kidding you!! I know I am sick and I can tell you when somebody else is sick and these people are some really sick people!! I mean, they are even sicker than I am!! And I am stuck here!! 




And I am putting this next portion here to explain the fence with the slats the man keeps knocking out of the fence ... And to show you just what a total azzwipe I am dealing with from this retired code enforcer for a neighbor and I keep stressing retired code enforcer because I want people to see just what we have working for our county and they are given some rule over us and this one thinks his rule reigns til his death!! His name is Thomas DeNicola and my husband has another name for that last name that I wont say here. 

He, my retired code enforcement neighbor, Thomas DeNicola, has actually knocked slats out of the wooden fence. He can see over here in my back yard. I have gone out to my yard and slats are knocked over on into my yard, which my jerk neighbor wants to declare it is my fence. When I first moved here, he called me over to his God forsaken front fence - I hate that fence hahaha That fence is a horror fence for gossiping liars --- Anyhow, so he calls me over there and points to the wooden fence towards the back yard and says --- You know that is your fence, dont you. You are responsible to keep it maintained and repaired.

I told him -- Actually, I have already looked up all of the information about fences in Hillsborough County because that fence is right on the property line. I told him the laws in regards to fences on the property line. Both of us own the fence. Both of us are required to maintain and repair the fence. He quickly tossed up his hands and said ... now listen to this one ... The code and zoning laws do not apply out here .....

You see what I am dealing with here dont you? The laws only apply when he wants to use them to work for him!! And he has a big huge something hooked onto the other side of that fence and hangs his big ladder on it and the slats come loose and pop every time he takes his ladder off. And slats have shown up over here way on my property where he has obviously shoved them.

If anybody thinks that I am going to pay for this man to have a nice fence to hang his ladder on just so he can keep popping slats to cause me an ongoing expense in repairs ... they are crazy!! I aint touching that fence unless it is that I have prepared to put up my own fence and I will take down every single slat of that fence he declares is mine. I cant take down the post and rail post the slats are nailed to because that part is on his property but the slat boards fall on my side and I do plan one day, those slats will all come down when I buy enough fence to put up way on my property to block that man from me. I hate to see his face!

I didnt put that fence there. And I also think he is lying about the fence. The fence faces in a direction that would indicate it is his fence. The post and post boards face his house and by law, you are to face those to your house of your fence. I think the idiot put up that fence and then realized it is on the property line and so he is trying to make out like that fence was put up by somebody from this house. The man I bought the house from didnt put it up. It doesnt even matter who put it up, by law, we are both required to maintain and repair it and I am not repairing something that this man keeps purposely tearing up. He wants to tear it up, he can put his money into fixing what he vandalizes. This man is a liar!! A constant liar. A retired code and zoning liar to boot!!!! 

Edited by CherryBobbery - 10/27/15 at 10:32pm
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