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The Return of the Urban Chicken

chickenOK, we’ve talked about starting a garden and even gardening on the deck of apartments. I mentioned raising a little bit of protein – but also cautioned that people need to check out their local ordinances.

It seems that I am a bit “behind-hand” (as my mom used to say) in terms of urban farming. Apparently, raising chickens in the urban setting has become, like knitting, “the new yoga”:

This past year alone, grass-roots organizations in Missoula, Mont.; South Portland, Maine; Ann Arbor, Mich.; and Ft. Collins, Colo., have successfully lobbied to overturn city ordinances outlawing backyard poultry farming, defined in these cities as egg farming, not slaughter. Ann Arbor now allows residents to own up to four chickens (with neighbors’ consent), while the other three cities have six-chicken limits, subject to various spacing and nuisance regulations….

In New York, where chickens (but not roosters, whose loud crowing can disturb neighbors) are allowed in limitless quantities, there are at least 30 community gardens raising them for eggs, and a City Chicken Project run by a local nonprofit that aims to educate the community about their benefits…

(Poultry Politics, urban chickens)

For those interested in getting together with other egg-fanciers, here are a few sites to help you find one another, check out your local ordinances, and so on.

(originally published at Oxdown Gazette)

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