Government has a history of backing the urban chicken movement…

Yes, it’s true. During hard times our government has come forth and supported the backyard chicken movement. Why? Well…in hard economic times it’s a blessing to be able to go to your backyard and pick up breakfast. Maybe even dinner. Self sustainability relieves the government, at least to a small extent, of caring for those who can’t afford even food at times. Hens are fairly easy to care for. Even in the worst of times they can free range to find enough food to live off of. More importantly though there is the issue of property rights. 4 hens take up very little room. I see no reason for a local government to flat out ban hens in any city. Ignorance and fear are at the root of those regulations. I happen to know that my family is quite capable of caring for a few backyard hens with less effort than it takes to care for our 2 caged cockatiels! So in hard times, our nation has a history of supporting backyard hens. After the worst economic recession since the great depression, you’d think this was just a no brainer for local government. Or not……

Why go underground?

I do get weird looks from my friends when I tell them I want chickens. Most of them have never considered it cause, well…eggs come from the store right? Weirder yet, were the looks we got from city council after trying to get the current codes changed to allow for backyard hens. Not gonna happen. I can however, have a pot bellied pig (up to 2) or a ball python, which can grow over 9 ft. long and eat a child. So my family decided to go underground with our hens. Right now our backyard is divided, 1 part common area, 1 part garden. The garden has trees that border our property line which serve as a nice natural barrier. Hedges form a fence from the rest of the yard so no one can actually see the garden area. Perfect, that’s 2 sides already covered. We just need to do something about the back fence line. This week we’ll make a home depot run and get a few more plants to start on the fence line. By the end of the summer we should have decent cover. Not a big issue right away as that particular neighbor is rarely seen or heard.

We want hens for the same reason most people do: fresh eggs, they’re fun to watch and easy to care for. Easier than caged, inside birds! We petitioned the city, went to city hall several times to speak, got the press involved, made websites and sent out flyers. In the end this city is far to elite for hens. At least for legal hens. Over the next few months I’ll chronicle our move to the underground. I’ll post pictures of the growing chicks, the brooder and of course the coop. And if I get caught, I’ll chronicle that too. I’m not big on the city mirco managing our property and since they don’t want to listen to voices of reason I’ll just take care of this on my own. Setting up the brooder this weekend. Pictures to follow!