Urban Chickens Come to Springfield
Why did the chicken cross the road? Probably because it heard about Springfield's approval of an urban chicken ordinance [pdf], which allows chickens to be raised within the city limits.
Below are a few of the policies listed in a press release from the city:
- No roosters.
- Chickens must be kept in an enclosed area (fence or other enclosure) during daytime hours, and must be secured during non-daylight hours.
- Enclosures must be located no closer than 3 feet from the property line and at least 25 feet from another residence or business.
- Enclosures need to provide adequate ventilation, shade and sun, and also be "impermeable to rodents, wild birds and predators, including dogs and cats."
- Chickens must be housed in the backyard of a dwelling.
- Owners must store manure in a container or arrange removal from property. No more than 3 cubic feet of manure can be stored on the property.
- Enclosures must be clean, odor-free, dry, and kept in sanitary conditions at all times.
You can also read the City of Springfield's full listing of rules related to raising urban chickens.
The big question still remains: why raise chickens? An article on GoodbyeCityLife.com talks about how chickens are not only a source of eggs, but they also aerate soil and control bug populations. Chicken manure is also a great source of fertilizer for gardens and flower beds.
UrbanChickens.org is another site that offers tips on raising chickens, egg recipes, chicken first aid along with links to other chicken-raising resources like what to feed chickens and different types of coops and shelters.
The University of Missouri Extension has several online resources for managing a small flock, including information on housing, feeding, disease control and prevention, and egg handling.
Need more information? The Library has an assortment of books available for checkout.
Raise Happy Chickens and Other Poultry
by Victoria Roberts
Keeping Chickens: Self-sufficiency
by Mike Hatcher
The Joy of Keeping Chickens: The Ultimate Guide to Raising Poultry for Fun or Profit
by Jennifer Megyesi
Homemade Living: Keeping Chickens with Ashley English
by Ashley English
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