Should I break the law??

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by kv, Oct 27, 2007.

  1. kv

    kv In the Brooder

    Oct 23, 2007
    I am new here. I've always wanted a backyard "homestead". I would be satisfied with bees and chickens. I called the zoning board in my area and they informed me that I need 1 acre minimum to have chickens. I have 1/2 acre. Also, my neighbors on both sides are virtually NEVER in their yards. My 2 neighbors in the back are fenced and also don't come out too much. In other words, if I only had 2 chickens, I think I could probably get away with it. I would have an EGLU or some other low profile coop and screen my yard with shrubs or a fence. If anyone asked me what the coop was, I would just tell them that my kids were keeping a couple of bunnies. Oooh, I am sooo bad!

    I want to let them out to free range in the yard, also. At night they will be locked up tight because Mr. Fox is a very busy customer around here with all the wild bunnies.
    I realize that I must minimize the smell, too. My plan is to figure out how to make some kind of sliding poop tray in the coop (like the Eglu) and dump the poop into these large wire bins I have set up already (for compost) filled with shredded leaves. I can dump some poop and cover it up with a layer of leaves and just do that until the bin is full.

    I am going to forego the bees because I think they will attract too much attention to the chickens.

    So, do you all think I can get away with a couple of laying hens? I really don't give a hoot about the "zoning". I think most of the neighbors' dogs are at least as much of a nuisance as my chickens would be. Please advise.

  2. PurpleChicken

    PurpleChicken Tolerated.....Mostly

    Apr 6, 2007
    Risk it. 3 or 4 hens won't make any noise and there
    should be no smell if you keept the coop clean.

    If anyone says anything say they are pets or hide them
    in a shed or garage.
  3. Redfeathers

    Redfeathers Songster

    Oct 11, 2007
    Gervais OR
    I'd risk it too. My chickens hardly make any noise, my neighbors haven't really seemed to notice them at all. Heck my dogs make more noise then the chickens do and nobody ever complains about them. I don't let them bark much, but dogs will be dogs. [​IMG]
  4. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Crowing

    There was a guy who bought three Silkies from a friend of mine. I kept in touch with him for a while because he, too, was breaking the law and I told him I would take his girls if he got busted.
    One neighbor inquired about the birds and he told them they were exotic "ground dwelling parrots"! [​IMG] The neighbor bought it and he still has his girls!!!
    Come on. If you'd never seen a Silkie before, would you think it was a chicken? That just might be your golden ticket!!!
  5. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    Keep in mind we are the worst enablers for anyone who wants to get or get MORE chickens!!

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I say go for it also - as others have said, maybe 3 hens tops. You can order small quantity girls only orders from My Pet Chicken ( or You'll pay a fortune in shipping, but it's worth it to get just what you want.

    OR see what you may have locally. If/when you are ready, post here in the buy/sell/trade area and you may be able to find just what you are looking to add to your backyard.

    As I sit here and YET AGAIN listen to my neighbor's dog barking all night, I can't see how a small number of PET chickens could be any more of a nuisance than that. Just stay away from the roosters - they will give you away for sure!
  6. gardener

    gardener Songster

    Oct 8, 2007
    Willamette Valley
    How about you call it "civil disobediance" instead of breaking the law, just sounds so much nicer. Its not like you are starting your own farm business of 100's of laying hens. 2 chickens sure dont need an acre of land to be happy and healthy.
    But then if someone reports you be ready to have to give them up meanwhile start campaigning to get the law changed. More cities are allowing small backyard flocks.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2007
  7. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Songster

    May 4, 2007
    Yes you should! Sometimes it's easier to ask for forgiveness then permission. [​IMG]

    Also check out Seachick's site. She actually got the laws (I'm sorry, I mean ordinances [​IMG] ) changed in S.Portland, Maine (our largest city) to allow a certain number of hens.

    [​IMG] for suburban and city chickens!!
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 27, 2007
  8. PurpleChicken

    PurpleChicken Tolerated.....Mostly

    Apr 6, 2007
    (now that song is in my head)

    I like the civil disobediance thing. I doubt Thomas Jefferson had
    the "No Chicken Law" in mind. Nothing unethical here.

    And is an ordinance a law? I don't think so....
  9. alex

    alex Songster

    Jul 1, 2007
    if you really want it...just do it...i would...good luck...with all the planning you did i think you can achieve that, i meen 1-2 chickens pssshhhh...
  10. kv

    kv In the Brooder

    Oct 23, 2007
    Thank you all so much for your quick responses. Now, I need to figure out which are the quietest most docile breeds. Also, if there are any exotic looking ones that are quiet, docile and good layers--I will try that "Exotic Ground-Dwelling Parrot" on any nosy neighbors.

    BTW, what's with the blood spots? Is there any way to avoid 'em? I always find more of them in the brown eggs from the market than the white. Is this true also raising them at home?

    I am going to get a few basic books and read them before I do this.
    Thanks again,


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