Officially official!

finalpermitWe’re legal, baby!

For two months now, we’ve had our baby chickens, but we only had a partial approval for the coop. The final OK couldn’t come until the inspector returned to check out our chicks.

In Ferndale, the town where we live, the local ordinance allows only three hens and no roosters. So today’s visit was basically a roll call and gender check.

The inspector was super nice, and the same one who approved our structure in January. Unfortunately, our dog Charlie lost his mind and barked at him like a rabid animal. I had never seen him do this before, and frankly, was mortified. The inspector was good-natured, and said he’d prefer to have Charlie inside, if only to save his clean pants from muddy dog paws. It was only 9 a.m., after all.

After securing Charlie in the house, the inspector and I walked to the coop. He looked closely at the foundation, and cautioned me to watch for small animals burrowing under the rat wall. He marveled at the metal roof, and said the structure was properly weather-proofed.

The girls were hiding out in the hen house, so I opened the door and let him take a peek.

“One-two-three. And they all appear to be girls,” he said.

Gigi, Loretta and Nellie chirped away, oblivious.

He mentioned that the chickens will lay eggs for three to four years. “And then they’re either free-range or free dinner,” he said, with a chuckle.

“Oh, not these girls,” I assured him. “They will move into a happy retirement.”

Before he left, the inspector handed me a green sticker, and told me he would be returning on a yearly basis to inspect the coop and the chickens.

And with that, the Chicken Scratch Fever farm is officially official.

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3 Comments on “Officially official!

  1. I don’t know if your town is the norm for requiring inspections and permits, but our county just passed a county code change last July to allow 4 backyard chickens and no roosters. The coop has to be enclosed and is the only requirement and as long as it is under 120 sq ft, no building permit is required. Funny thing is that my neighbor two doors down has had chickens for about four years and nobody ever said anything. You just don’t hear them! Maybe it’s because we all have two acre wooded lots.

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    • Yes, I think our town requires permits because we are an urban area. I live exactly one mile north of the Detroit city limits. If we were a bit more rural, or even more suburban with larger lots, things might be different. We did have to obtain a building permit for the coop, but I didn’t mind. The requirements weren’t that hard to meet. And you’re right about chickens being quiet. I remember fretting about how much noise they would make. And now, I can hardly hear them when they are in front of me! 🙂

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      • That is so cool that you are allowed to have chicks so close to a large town. We are outside the city limits but not zoned agricultural. Makes a big difference!

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