First off, I'd like to say thank you all for your help, even though i've only recently become a member, i've been using this site for helpful info for well over a year now. you folks are awesome beyond words. second, i'd like to introduce my self, I'm Roy and i'm an industrial painter for caterpillar. My wife and i have moved to a agricultural area shortly after getting married so we could have some space for our dogs, settle down and raise a family and a flock. and lastly my (our) story...... After close to two years of having out first flock of hens we thought we had learned it all. We've built our first coop, hatched our first brood, swapped chickens and made some friends. We've lost chicks to worms, experienced bumble foot, naked chicken butts, battled rats, we over came our trials and learned alot but we were not prepared for our neighbors. again, after two years of being told by both of our neighbors that they loved our chickens (and their eggs), we thought we had it all figured out. we'd fence in our yard to keep the hens in, so they can be out of their run. but while in the middle of fencing in our back yard, i lost my job. at the time i worked for a company contracted by the military to repaint and rebuild vehicles, well the government had a brain fart and i lost my job because of it. Sad, i know, but i was fortunate enough to regain employment in less than a months time and life moved on. however, being temporarily unemployed and then going through a job transition, our fence was put on hold. so here we are, fence being 3/4 complete, our neighbor decides she doesnt like our chickens any more, and with out so much as a neighborly nock on the door or a phone call to us, she decided to press charges when one of our hens break out of the coop and wanders her yard. so, to turn a long story short, and to make a short story abbreviated..... wife and i are less than two months into my new job and her making a job transition of her own, we finish the fencing project. Get educated in the newly developed laws on chickens and decide to expand our number of hens in a peaceful protest sort of way. what we've learned after having earned a misdemeanor for "poultry at large" and a panic over possibly loosing our chickens to a newly developed law is this: 1. in our zone it is only legal to have no more than 6 hens 2. no roosters 3. permits for coop are required as well as an inspection of coop and fees for filing 4. hens are not to be free range, coop and run confinement at all times 5. none of the listed above applies if you own/lease 5 acres or more So here comes our other neighbor to our rescue, giving us free easement and leasing of 5 acres of her land (with option to buy up to 19 acres) we can now have as many hens and roosters our hearts may desire. And so, being slightly broke-ish from job swapping, holiday shopping and fence building. Here is our progress on our new coop. Pics coming soon.