Just a couple days prior to going to shoot video of yet another nice person and their backyard chickens, this lady got a visit from a bylaw officer asking her to remove her birds or pay the $500 fine. Admittedly, I was relieved that they had paid her a visit before I did the video, otherwise I’d feel like it was somehow my fault. She’s decided to not pay the fine and see the city in court. As it turns out, she has to wait in line as another decision is pending thanks to this guy. She’s since started an Edmonton chapter of CLUCK. I had her speak to $ cost, time cost, and a variety of other topics that folks generally ask about when it comes to backyard hens.
I know viewers will ask or be curious around how she got busted. Although I don’t know the specifics, I do know that she was perhaps pushing her luck on a couple fronts – first by having roosters [generally a no-no even in cities that allow backyard hens, and source of potential noise complaints], but perhaps more of a liability was that the chickens are allowed to roam freely in the neighbourhood. I certainly wouldn’t care if she was my neighbour and did that – perhaps a rogue egg would end up in my yard, my garden would get fertilized, or it would eat some insects for me – but I completely understand that somebody on the block is bound to object. Let your cat roam, no biggy [illegal], let your hens roam, $500 fine [also, illegal]. I never thought I’d find ‘pet law’ interesting, but it most certainly is.
As an aside, River City Chicken Collective is now on Twitter @rivercityhens.