Stevenson, WA strange zoning laws


6 Years
Apr 16, 2013
I called a yr ago to ask about whether we could have chickens, and the guy from the city office said that if I live on the other side of the creek (which is just 50 yards from the house) it's 100% ok to have chickens. I own my home, have a nice sized fully fenced yard, and it's a tiny, very rural town. It was baffling to me we can't own chickens here. Even in the big cities east of here chickens are ok. And what's a few yards anyway? But, the man also said that I should just ask the neighbors, which we did, and they don't have a problem at all with us owning a few chickens, and he gave us the go ahead to just get them. He said the city wouldn't even know we had them because we can hear the roosters from across the creek anyway. And we just got three hen chicks, so not as loud. And he said unless they started getting tons of complaints it won't be an issue, but I do want to make it a point to try to change this zoning ordinance, so that people who own their own home and have the space can own hens at least. Anyone have experience doing this? How did you do it?
When we used to live in Georgetown I had the same issue. I rented a townhouse that backed up to the Elkhorn Creek. It was a flood plain and absolutely nobody could build there, so just a big open field with trees along the creek, interstate 75 on one side and strip malls on the other. Well we had three standard hens and about 10 bantams in my back yard. Also tried ducks but that was not a good idea then, too messy and too loud.

Anyway, as long as we didn't have roosters nobody was the wiser. Animal control told my friend that chickens were not allowed but if you had a few hens not making lots of noise and nobody complained there wasn't a problem. Now my hens were not so quiet. Had an Easter Egger who loved crowing even though she laid the prettiest eggs, had another who sounded like she was being murdered when laying eggs. One neighbor came out to check on her she was so loud. And then there was my Red Comet who would lead the ladies around the side of the house to adventure to the neighbors flowerbeds and front yards. They knew they should be in back and would cluck and run when they saw me pull up the drive. The neighbors loved them and I had kids over all the time visiting. Nobody ever complained or fussed at us about them.

I think if you are quiet and fly under the radar in these towns that don't permit chickens you should be okay. We lived there for almost 12 years and never had an issue.
Yeah, I just hope my grumpy neighbor across the street doesn't decide to change his mind next time he gets his feathers in a fluff lol. ;)
I have mine under the radar because I was told by animal control and city hall it was ok, went ahead and built a coop and bought chickens. I then got a call back from the guy at city hall 2 months later saying he had made a mistake and our city only allows them in plots zoned agricultural. So far I haven't had any trouble but I know that could always change. I try to keep them quiet but they get grumbly now and then, and we've had a few escapes where the whole neighborhood saw us chasing chickens down the road, so I know the neighbors know we have them. If you can, try to get quiet docile breeds.
I live in Stevenson also. Chickens are ok. they lay eggs, and mostly cluck. Roosters, however, are different. They don't care about the time. They can also crow all day. We work long hours, and having a rooster going off at 5-6am. We will be calling this one in. Why? Number one, These people did not even have the courtesy to talk to us about this issue. Number two, roosters don't lay eggs. These are farm animals, not pets to be raised in town, No matter how small it is. Hopefully you will be able to move to a farm so you can have your farm animals.

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