Keeping chickens in a garage???

Jan 2, 2021
31
135
89
Northern Nevada
I'm going to look into quail and see if I can pull a fast one on the city. If it isn't specifically mentioned that no quail are allowed, then I'm guessing that I would be in the right. At the very least I can please ignorance. Can't believe this stupid ordinance, its actually really shocking because the majority of the parcels in my quadrant of the city are over an acre. Plus we are less than a 1/4 mile from a farm community which grows the majority of the states hazelnuts. It's just not a fitting or reasonable law, given the area.

I wouldn't recommend trying that argument, but it's your choice. I would liken it to saying "well, there is nothing specifically stating I can't have ostriches or rhinos or giraffes..." Just because it isn't specifically stated as not allowed doesn't imply it *is* allowed.

That said, quail might just fly under everyone's radar, so to speak :) since they're much quieter.

I would still look into getting the ordnance changed. Do some research here and online elsewhere. You might get surprised and find out someone else is already working on the issue in your city. That's what happened to us - when we started looking into it, we found the owner of a local garden store was already getting things moving with our city council, and already had a group of interested locals coming together.

I wish you the best of luck with this!
 

TheAlrightyGina

Crowing
Sep 3, 2020
775
3,073
316
Memphis, TN
Quail may be a better choice but the town/city may still consider them to be "poultry" if you keep them any place except inside of your home. All it takes is you opening the garage door & one jerk neighbor to see & complain, regardless of what animal you have there.

This is a fair statement. I do know that it is possible to make it pretty hard to realize they are there. Before my brother bought a farm, he raised quail in his garage and I had no idea even though I went through said garage to get in his house when I visited him. He had to tell me about it. As long as there's something between their cage and the door I doubt anyone except people who literally snoop around your garage would even know.
 

Liz Birdlover

Crowing
Jan 6, 2018
836
2,805
316
Delaware, USA
This is a fair statement. I do know that it is possible to make it pretty hard to realize they are there. Before my brother bought a farm, he raised quail in his garage and I had no idea even though I went through said garage to get in his house when I visited him. He had to tell me about it. As long as there's something between their cage and the door I doubt anyone except people who literally snoop around your garage would even know.
As long as there's a way to give them sunshine & fresh air, let them have a healthy, happy habitat. A friend converted his garage into a bird habitat for when they breed babies. He parks his mower & tiller in another shed so no gas fumes & he added windows with hardware cloth protective screen so when windows open for air, cats or raccoons can't break in. He had them out on a screened porch temporary while he was cleaning the garage well, and a hawk zoomed in, tearing right through the screen on his porch! Luckily the birds were in a large cage so hawk didn't get them. Just think carefully about their comfort & welfare, garages can get cold, not have enough light or ventilation & can have hidden dangers if you have other stuff in there that's hazardous. Birds have sensitive respiratory systems.
 
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AmeliaBeastMaster

In the Brooder
Jan 19, 2021
6
27
13
Nut trees don't make noise or exude stinky stuff.

Mind sharing what city?
Someone suggested trying to change the law there.
Might browse this forum for ideas.

Not just nuts, there are cows and horses too. Just commenting that its essentially farm land with a few subdivisions thrown in. City is Sherwood, OR. They had a committee meeting on the issue in 2015 and the proposal to remove the land use fee application (worth mentioning, chickens are not actually forbidden. They require a permit, which is 4K and requires a hearing). There is not actually language which forbids, or limits chicken keeping. Only that it requires a "change in land use permit". No comment on how this is regulated or punished, the mayor herself said that people were keeping chickens in Sherwood and the city had no intention to actually enforce this "law" in any real sense, so I'm really not sure what they would even do. I will look into changing the law, I will read the info in that forum, thank you.
 

AmeliaBeastMaster

In the Brooder
Jan 19, 2021
6
27
13
Quail may be a better choice but the town/city may still consider them to be "poultry" if you keep them any place except inside of your home. All it takes is you opening the garage door & one jerk neighbor to see & complain, regardless of what animal you have there.

I don't mean to sound negative but trust me I used to live in a neighborhood and neighbors will complain about anything and everything, especially if you have a busy body, bored, stuck in the house, looking out the window all day for things to bitch about. One nasty lady complained because my neighbor had a kennel set up for their dog in the garage, she made up a false claim that they were boarding dogs! It was just whenever their son had weekly meeting in the house, they would put the dog in the crate in the garage for a few hours or he'd get too excited running around other kids during their meeting, but she saw the empty dog crate out there when the garage door opened, and proceeded to complain, saying dogs in their garage were attracting rats!

Just be aware of potential idiot scenarios.

I read the articles of of city code cover to cover. Never once mentions chickens, poultry, quails etc. Looks like its more of a "suggested" requirement? Doesn't mention what kind of offense it is, how it is punished/fined etc. Really bizarre. I want to challenge it, but I don't know how effective I would be.
 
Jan 2, 2021
31
135
89
Northern Nevada
Not just nuts, there are cows and horses too. Just commenting that its essentially farm land with a few subdivisions thrown in. City is Sherwood, OR. They had a committee meeting on the issue in 2015 and the proposal to remove the land use fee application (worth mentioning, chickens are not actually forbidden. They require a permit, which is 4K and requires a hearing). There is not actually language which forbids, or limits chicken keeping. Only that it requires a "change in land use permit". No comment on how this is regulated or punished, the mayor herself said that people were keeping chickens in Sherwood and the city had no intention to actually enforce this "law" in any real sense, so I'm really not sure what they would even do. I will look into changing the law, I will read the info in that forum, thank you.
Right now, you could probably still get hit with a nuisance violation if someone complained, but this sounds like a good start. The permit sounds like its intended target is agriculture on a scale larger than your backyard. If you (and hopefully other interested parties) can convince the city to consider backyard-scale chicken keeping on the same level as pet dogs and cats instead of cows and horses, you would have a great start.

Fun fact about my city - it was legal to keep pot-bellied pigs before it was legal to keep chickens. I'm not against the pigs, but they do make at least as much of a mess and smell at least as bad (if not well-kept) as a small flock of chickens. They can do a lot worse damage to a fenceline as well.

There have been numerous successful ordinance changes in recent years in even larger cities and more densely-populated areas than yours. I really think you have a chance.
 

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