Sunday, April 8, 2012

Great Neck Wrings Neck of Backyard Chicken Ordinance

This is a sight you will not see in Great
Neck, New York.  Click for photo credit.
The Village of Great Neck decided recently not to allow individuals to keep chickens in their backyard.  You can read about the situation here.  This is bucking a national trend that has been emerging in recent years.  Many communities have voted to allow individuals to keep hens (not the noisy roosters) in backyards or on rooftops for egg and meat production.  Even densely populated New York City allows backyard chickens.  Also contrary to an earlier post of mine that suggested that Long Island bans chicken raising, some communities very close to Great Neck, particularly very upper crust Manhasset, allow backyard chickens.  You can read more about backyard chickens here.

I don't see the chicken issue going away any time soon in Great Neck or other places on Long Island.  There is greater interest in raising chickens in backyards.  Plus as more and more people learn the benefits of backyard chickens, it is likely that local governments will support the trend.

Long Island communities tend to be geographically small and they do not change very quickly.  People tend to vote on landuse issues in ways that preserve the value of property.  I can understand the fear that some may have that backyard chickens may decrease property values.  However, young adults tend to get the backyard chicken trend and do not have a problem with chickens in their neighborhoods.  While Long Island has had a long public discussion about a youth drain on Long Island, communities are voting against the very things that would attract young, creative people to the region.

Also, just in case you haven't noticed yet, the Wisconsin Eagles I've been following have been tending their eaglet.  It has been fun to watch.  You can see the eagle family life here.  There are also clips showing the feeding and care of the baby eagle.

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