7/24/2008 Ordinance to ban chickens being hatched in Laureldale By Greta Cuyler Reading Eagle Laureldale, PA - A few chicks bought as Easter gifts have sparked talk in Laureldale about whether the borough needs a chicken-ban ordinance. Borough police Chief Ronald D. Fisher said that he nearly ran down three full-size chickens about a month ago while patrolling on Bellevue Avenue. He traced the birds to the residence of a grandmother who had purchased them as babies for her grandchildren at Easter. "She didn't know it was illegal," said the woman's daughter, Iris Lima, who co-owns the house in the 1200 block of Bellevue Avenue, but lives in Muhlenberg Township. Lima said her mother, whose name was not released, kept the birds at her home. She was on vacation when the chickens got loose, even though a caretaker was looking after the property. "Shortly after that, we started receiving complaints," Fisher said of calls from annoyed neighbors. "Chickens in their yards, roosting in their yards, being dirty all over the property - the usual chicken complaints." As the property's co-owner, Lima was cited for violating Laureldale's animal-at-large ordinance, police said. The citation is pending before District Judge Dean R. Patton of Muhlenberg Township. Laureldale Borough Council is now considering an ordinance that would specifically ban residents from owning chickens. "The yards aren't big enough to have people starting to bring pigs and chickens into their yard," Fisher said. "The next thing you know we'll start having beef cattle." Council President Chester F. Bogacki said council will discuss the proposed chicken ban in August. As for the wayward birds, Lima said that as soon as the police chief told her there was a problem, the caretaker took care of it. "He killed them and took them over to my brother's house," Lima said. "I guess (my brother) ate them." Laureldale already has a ban specific to owning a pig as a pet. That ordinance was enacted several years ago after a resident adopted a pot-bellied pig, Fisher said. Contact reporter Greta Cuyler at 610-371-5042 or [email protected]eagle.com.