Fredericton approves backyard chicken bylaw
8 families are on a waiting list to raise chickens in their backyards
Fredericton council approved a new bylaw on Monday night that will allow residents to keep backyard chicken coops under strict regulations.
Since 2011, the city has granted a pilot project and asked citizens their views on whether to allow chickens to be raised inside the city.
Councillors adopted a bylaw on Monday that will allow chicken coops to be located behind single, detached houses in certain areas of the city. There could be a maximum of three hens and the eggs or meat could not be sold.
Sebastian Salazar, the city solicitor, said people will have to submit their plans to the city, and pay a one-time fee of $250.00. They will also be limited to three hens and no roosters.
"They have to be located at least 10 metres from neighbouring homes, so they have to be in the backyards," he said.
Despite all of the rules, the vote means Fredericton residents, such as Hazel Richardson, will be able to keep their chickens.
Richardson and her daughter Maeve have a daily egg hunt.
Their backyard coop was a part of a pilot project as the city was exploring the bylaw.
Richardson had to do all the research and make a pitch to the city.
"When I first brought this up a lot of people had concerns," she said.
"They say chickens are smelly, chickens are noisy, chickens attract predator animals and those are valid concerns that people have, so it's really important to do something like this so people can see it's not an issue."
With the bylaw now approved, the city has about eight families on a waiting list ready to buy chickens to put in their backyards.
Saint John moved forward on its own backyard chicken bylaw earlier this month.
Saint John has also imposed restrictions on where chickens can be kept and limited the number of birds.
Moncton could also be adopting a similar law after a pilot project wrapped up a few years ago.
An official with the Greater Moncton Planning Commission said last year the municipal bylaw changes, which would include backyard farms, are expected go to council sometime in 2013.