Town of Clarenville amends reg­u­la­tions to al­low chick­ens in res­i­den­tial zones

The Packet (Clarenville) - - FRONT PAGE - BY JONATHAN PAR­SONS THE PACKET jonathan.par­sons@thep­acket.ca Twit­ter: @je­j­par­sons

CLARENVILLE, NL — Chicken own­ers in Clarenville have noth­ing to fear after last Tues­day’s coun­cil meet­ing, as the Town of Clarenville moved to amend reg­u­la­tions to al­low res­i­dents to raise hens on their prop­er­ties.

Coun­cil was pre­vi­ously alerted to some res­i­dents who were rais­ing chick­ens – which fall un­der live­stock in mu­nic­i­pal de­vel­op­ment reg­u­la­tions – on their prop­er­ties.

Some con­cerned cit­i­zens asked the town to amend the reg­u­la­tions to per­mit a small num­ber of hens in res­i­den­tial zones.

After some dis­cus­sion, coun­cil said it has no prob­lem with res­i­dents keep­ing small num­bers of hens on their prop­er­ties.

Chief ad­min­is­tra­tive of­fi­cer David Har­ris says while it’s cur­rently a vi­o­la­tion of the reg­u­la­tions, many of the home­stead­ers have had chick­ens on their prop­er­ties for decades.

He adds other mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties have al­ready moved to­wards al­low­ing res­i­dents to keep a lim­ited num­ber of live­stock, due to the em­pha­sis on peo­ple se­cur­ing a sus­tain­able and en­vi­ron­men­tally friendly food source, like eggs. The City of Cor­ner Brook in­tro­duced reg­u­la­tions in May.

Coun. Bill Bai­ley said he doesn’t see the prob­lem with keep­ing a lim­ited num­ber of chick­ens in res­i­den­tial ar­eas. He called it a “non-is­sue.”

Har­ris says com­plaints were not about the chick­ens, but from the noise caused by roost­ers.

The town is amend­ing reg­u­la­tions to de­ter­mine a spe­cific limit on the num­ber of chick­ens, but also grand­fa­ther­ing in those who cur­rently have chick­ens on their prop­er­ties. The new reg­u­la­tions will also en­sure own­ers must keep pens clean.

Sev­eral home­own­ers who raise hens were in at­ten­dance, in­clud­ing Sandy Keel, who said he looks at his chick­ens not as live­stock, but pets.

“Ev­ery night I go out, they line up on the roost and I’ve got to give ev­ery one a rub on the top of the head down the neck,” says Keel. “If I miss one, and shut off that light, and that chicken will bawl at me. So, I turn on the light go back in giver her a rub and shut the door.”

Coun. Bai­ley joked that coun­cil may put that re­quire­ment in the reg­u­la­tion as well.

Keel was pleased with the re­sults, as he’s kept chick­ens his en­tire life, he says. He even gives free eggs to all the neigh­bours on his street.

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