|We'd been talking about keeping chickens for a while, and as a friend noted, it's a logical progression from beekeeping. Backyard chicken-keeping is a popular pastime in the US and there is no shortage of information to be had on the matter through books and the interweb. |
To allay fears about the amount of effort involved in keeping a flock, we discussed the project with friends who were already active chicken-keepers. We both had concerns that there would be constant cleaning required, and we were worried that the flock might create objectional smells and noise. We were reassured to hear that the amount of care required would not be prohibitive and that the flock would not present any hygiene issues or antisocial behaviour as long as we kept up basic daily (food and water), weekly (light cleaning) and twice-yearly (thorough cleaning) maintenance.
All sources suggest that a visit to the township offices should be the first order of business. Some localities impose strict rules on the keeping of birds. The location and size of the flock may be limited and the type of housing and space required may also be regulated. Some townships may prohibit chicken-keeping altogether.
Consultation with the TownshipWe had a rough idea of what we wanted to do so we began by discussing the project with the township. In our location there are regulations but they are not overly restrictive. Our initial concern was that we might not be able to place the coop near the house, but this did not prove to be an issue.