Newbie to the chicken world...and boards. :o)

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by brightspot, Apr 6, 2007.

  1. brightspot

    brightspot New Egg

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    Apr 6, 2007
    Hello!

    I'm a happily married, 31 year old, stay at home mother of three who lives in Central Ohio. I've recently been looking for ways to stretch a dollar by growing my own food, recycling clothing, etc. and I was interested in perhaps keeping a couple of chickens in my backyard for eggs and also because they produce a great fertilizer that would really be useful in my "lasagna gardening".

    I know absolutely nothing about keeping chickens, so please if I say anything ignorant, don't take it for purposeful stupidity. It is what it appears - I'm a newbie who doesn't know anything yet. [​IMG] I've only just had the idea at all, and begun looking for information.

    My question is this - I live within city limits, in a 20 year old housing development. I have a rather large yard, but it's not a whole acre or anything, and I do have neighbors. Who would I contact to see if it's legal to keep a few chickens? I can hear somebody's rooster a few streets over, so I know someone in the neighborhood has chickens, but it's in an older area and it may just be tolerated because they've lived there for 60 years. There's a small farm supply store by me that is selling chicks in lots of 6, but the person I spoke with there said I should check on the legality of keeping them first.

    Any hints, tips or pointers for me? Am I insane for even thinking of keeping a couple of chickens?

    Thanks and nice to meet you!

    Brightie
     
  2. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

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    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    Am I insane for even thinking of keeping a couple of chickens?

    Most certainly not! People (myself included) have kept dogs and cats for years, and what do they give us besides love and devotion and vet bills? Why not keep a 'pet' that can also feed us! [​IMG] Keeping a small backyard flock is a fun and honorable passtime. [​IMG]

    Who would I contact to see if it's legal to keep a few chickens?

    You should start by contacting your local Agriculture Department to find out if you are "zoned" to keep chickens within your city limits. Chances are, they'll allow it, but keep with regulations like 'coop must be 200 feet or more from the living dwelling...' or that you can keep only hens, or they may limit the number you can keep. Those are the most common regulations that I've heard of. Fortunately for me, I am zoned as "rural" being surrounded by nothing by corn field, so I could keep any livestock I wanted....not that I would of course!

    Any hints, tips or pointers for me?

    Everyone here will be happy to help you with advice and helpful tidbits! This is a very nice community, and we are all devoted to doing the best we can wether we raise a backyard flock of 2, or 200, or somewhere in between. [​IMG] Once you check on the legalities in your area, come on back and we'll teach you everything you could possibly want to know about chickens!​
     
  3. Backyard Buddies

    Backyard Buddies Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    Welcome to the group Brightie! You'll want to find your city regulations regarding chickens. These can vary from town to town and even from neighborhood to neighborhood. It is likely that your town has published the regulations. A quick telephone call down to the city office in charge of animal regulations would be a good place to start. You may also find your answer online since many towns publish their animal ordinances online. You can do this by searching on Google. There might also be an answer here: http://www.animallaw.info/statutes/stusohst955.htm

    As
    I said, the rules can vary immensely. I live in Orange County, California and MOST of the cities allow the raising of chickens (not roosters) on city lots. I'm allowed up to 4 pets, chickens included, even though I live on a small 6400 sf lot. If I lived one town over, I could have 6. Another town over, none. Others here live on an acre and chickens are not allowed by city ordinance. This is why it's important to take the time to look.

    Now, as for that chicken poo mulch. . . It's AWESOME!!!! This is my first year with chickens and I have to say this is the best I've ever done with lettuce and greens. The chickens have also contained the bug population so nothing was munched on, except for the stray nibbles the chickens would grab as they walked by. But, we'll excuse them for that! I love your goals of wanting to grow your own food, recycling, and such. I'm right there with ya!

    Good luck. I hope it works out for you. You'll learn a lot here!
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2007
  4. Varisha

    Varisha Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 22, 2007
    I have a question for you [​IMG] ... what is "lasagna gardening"?
     
  5. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

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    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    She is probably reffering to a garden where she grows tomatoes, oregano, basil, and other spices and vedgetables used in lasagna! Yum! Makes my mouth water! Lasagna is one of my fave foods! [​IMG]
     
  6. HenHappy

    HenHappy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    on my way to you....
    ya...I do Salsa gardening. Everything I need to make an excllent salsa!!![​IMG]
     
  7. Varisha

    Varisha Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 22, 2007
    ah [​IMG] Never heard of that way of refering to a garden. [​IMG]
     
  8. SandraChick

    SandraChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Welcome brightspot!


    "Lasagna Gardening: A New Layering System for Bountiful Gardens: No Digging, No Tilling, No Weeding, No Kidding! "

    I use a modified version of it (my version that is!)


    just google lasagna gardening....

    Sandra
     
  9. cookinmom

    cookinmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 14, 2007
    Saint George GA
    Hi Brightspot!

    1 - You are definitely not insane for wanting a few chickens

    2 - Yea, lasagna gardening! The only way to go!!! I have hay in my chicken coop and once a week a take it out, with all that lovely other stuff, and I've been lasagna-ing it, and it is so great! It starts breaking down pretty fast, and my cucumbers and watermelons are loving it!!!

    3 - If your city has a website, you might see if there is a way you can check the zoning of your property, then look up their description of that zoning, and what is allowed/not allowed. When we lived in Jax that's what I did, because trying to get an intelligent person on the phone at a city office (and then not have them show up on your doorstep to inspect everything) was near impossible.

    Welcome to the forum, and the wonderful world of poultry!
     
  10. brightspot

    brightspot New Egg

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    Apr 6, 2007
    Quote:I know it sounds like a garden you grow lasagna ingredients in - and a lot of the things I'll be growing could be used that way! [​IMG] But lasagna gardening is actually a method of gardening without removing soil and tilling. You build up layers of organic materials, and then plant into them. They biodegrade, and you're left with plants growing in incredibly rich soil with few weed problems. Perfect for lazy me. [​IMG]

    You can read more about it here:

    http://www.thriftyfun.com/tf582744.tip.html

    I got the Lasagna Herb Gardening book from the library on Wednesday, and am about 12 pages from being finished with it now on Friday. I've never, ever read through an informational book like this - it's really interesting stuff!
     

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