The library regularly receives questions about raising chickens in urban areas (view previous blog posts on chickens here). So, it’s not too surprising the Saturday (March 23) edition of The Oregonian’s Community News (West Metro) featured an article on the popularity of raising hens in Washington County. As the article mentions, researching your local ordinances is important if you want to raise chickens on residential property. For example, Hillsboro drafted new livestock, bee, and exotic animal regulations a few years ago and now has a permit process. Beaverton also has codes relating to hens, and like Hillsboro, they don’t allow roosters. Don’t overlook possible local regulations regarding building structures/enclosures for poultry (for example, Hillsboro requires a building permit for structures over a certain size, and Beaverton’s code specifies the minimum distance an enclosure has to be from a neighboring dwelling).
Other helpful resources include your local animal control office, code enforcement office, and extension service office. OSU’s Extension Service has offices throughout the state, and their poultry specialist was interviewed for The Oregonian’s article.
On a fun note, Goblinproofing One’s Chicken Coop by Reginald Bakeley recently won the Diagram Prize for oddest book title of the year.