License for the keeping of chickens
Licenses are required by Ordinance for chickens being kept/owned in the city. Residents can keep a maximum of three (3) chickens and the chicken license is good for two (2) years.
For the initial license, all criteria as listed on the Chicken License Application form must be satisfied, along with a separate, approved Zoning permit for the chicken facilities (this is a one-time Zoning permit). Chicken licenses will be renewed every two years (similar to dogs and cats). Licenses applied for in the second year of the two year license cycle will be prorated at $15.00 for the license. Note, the Zoning permit is a separate fee. Below you will find the information on keeping of chickens, necessary zoning and licensing forms, the neighbor consent form, and the City's zoning regulations regarding chickens.
Zoning Requirements for Keeping of Chickens
In the R-1, R-2, and R-3 Districts, chickens are allowed subject to the following requirements:
- No more than three (3) hens shall be housed or kept on any one (1) residential lot with the issuance of a City license – link this to license.
- A zoning permit shall be required for the coop to house the chickens. Coops must be constructed and maintained to meet the following minimum standards:
- A coop with a minimum of 12 square feet and no larger than 25 square feet.
- Located in the rear yard only.
- The outer limit of coop including pen and exercise yard shall be located closer to the principal dwelling upon the property that is issued a license than any other residential dwelling on an abutting property.
- Climate control – adequate ventilation and/or insulation to maintain the coop temperature between 45 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Prior to issuance of an annual license, the prospective annual license holder must provide a plan for maintaining an adequate temperature in the coop for safety of the fowl or poultry. The plan must address both extreme winter and summer temperature conditions.
Prior to issuance of a zoning permit for construction of a coop and a chicken license, an Applicant shall be responsible for providing notification to the neighbors immediately adjacent to the property of their intent to keep chickens on the City provided neighbor consent form (link to form).
- 100% Neighbor consent is required from all of the immediately adjacent properties.
- Neighbor written responses will be returned to the City.
- Failure of a neighboring Property Owner to respond does not constitute consent.
Coops shall be subject to applicable accessory structure setbacks of the underlying zoning district.
Pen and Exercise Yard
- Required for the keeping of chickens located adjacent to the coop in the following minimum standards:
- The pen and exercise yard shall be fenced.
- Minimum size per bird shall be:
- Pen – 10 square feet of floor space
- Exercise yard - 174 square feet
- Screening shall be installed around the perimeter of the area dedicated for the keeping of chickens.
- A screening plan shall be approved as part of license application.
- Acceptable forms of screening are a six (6) foot tall solid fence or vegetation that shall consist of plantings which shall provide for year round screening and installed at a minimum of six (6) feet tall.
Allowance for third detached accessory building
A residential property with a detached garage and an accessory structure/shed will be allowed a third accessory structure for keeping chickens. The combined square footage of all three detached structures may not exceed 728 square feet.