Cities are all aflutter about the newest backyard pet – the chicken. San Marino ruled last month that residents will be allowed to raise chickens in the backyard. Chicken owners say there is a host of benefits for keeping chickens in the backyard such as fresh organic eggs, backyard manure and using chickens to eat up food waste. On top of it all, they can be a family pet. However, this family pet may not be well-loved by neighbors, who often complain about the noise.
San Marino is not the first city to allow chickens. According to the L.A. Daily News, Los Angeles, Pasadena, South Pasadena, Monterey Park, Glendora, Chino and Rancho Cucamonga already permit chickens, although there are restrictions on the number of chickens and bans on roosters.
Are you a chicken owner? What are the benefits to having a pet chicken? What are the difficulties? Would you want backyard chickens in your neighborhood? Should cities allow pet chickens in residential neighborhoods?
Kelli Johnson, farm manager of the Spring Street Farm, which is sponsored by the non-profit organization Long Beach Community Action Partnership; the Spring Street Farm is home to two urban chicken coops
Richard Ward, Councilmember and Vice Mayor for the city of San Marino, cast the lone dissenting vote in lifting the backyard chicken ban in San Marino
Kim Sturla, Executive Director and co-founder, Animal Place - an animal sanctuary in Grass Valley, California