Local News

Sanford family loses appeal to keep chickens

Posted August 13, 2008

— A family that hoped to be allowed to keep 14 chickens in their back yard lost their appeal to Sanford’s Code Enforcement department on Tuesday.

The decision meant the Reid family had to bring the birds to a farm outside the Sanford city limits. An ordinance prohibits poultry, swine or goats within the city.

The Reid family has had the chickens more than three years. During that time, the birds have won prizes at county and state fairs.

The city cites concerns about noise, smell and health.

Alexandra Reid said other cities allow chicken coops. She recently lobbied for the City Council to change the ordinance, proposing rules for chicken coops in the city. She suggested the coops be kept neat and fully covered and be located on large pieces of land at least 50 feet from a dwelling.

The Reid family told WRAL News they plan to continue their effort to get the ordinance changed.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • chickenlittle Aug 15, 2008

    tree007: "I agree with the Sanford local government ... this is a potential sanitation and health issue. For other pets (cats, dogs), I believe Sanford has a leash law and certain "care" guidelines and laws. Go to http://www.sanfordnc.net/Law/ordinances.htm and search on their ordinances.

    I suggest living outside the city limits if you want to farm or raise livestocks. I believe this would be easier on everyone involved."

    If "care" guidelines are an acceptable means to mitigate the health and sanitation issues for other animals, why not just create a more generic set of guidelines for chickens and other animals not explicitly allowed/denied?

  • horsejody Aug 15, 2008

    A total ban on chickens is ridiculous. They make less noise and less manure than your average dog. They actually make very nice pets.

  • mpheels Aug 13, 2008

    The great irony here is that it's actually more redneck to ban chickens than to allow them. Raising hens in urban areas is very chic and stylish now, just do a quick search on the NY Times for urban chickens. The Sanford ban is thinly veiled racism based on a fear that "those people who speak Spanish" will think chicken=goat=pig. Chickens are not a gateway drug! If you're generally ok with chickens but afraid a few hens will lead to goats and more, then pass clear ordinances banning non-chicken livestock and enforce those. If you're worried about noise and health issues you've clearly never encountered a well maintained small flock - well cared for hens are cleaner and quieter than the most pampered dog.

  • JofNC Aug 13, 2008

    QUOTE: "It isn't as though Sanford were a sprawling metro city with no green lawns (i.e. downtown New York, Chicago, etc)."

    I bet you were one of those people who complained about the pink house in Cary a few months ago. Why complain about the color choice that someone likes?

    Heck, for that matter, since everyone is going on about how local governments are RULING everyone's lives... why don't we just get rid of the local police authority too!?!

    For that matter, why don't we just run around like a bunch of crazies and do whatever we want to!

    ...wait a minute. That's what everyone IS doing.

    *SHEW* Thank goodness there are local officials keeping that from happening! LOL

  • alexcritter Aug 13, 2008

    To those of you suggesting health, sanitation, living metro, etc. Did you know Sandord DOES allow pigeons, pheasants, and those really loud annoying guineas and more. They say no goats but allow lambs. The point here is what are they really legislating for and why? Elected leaders must lead with insight and forethought, not provide stopgap legislation that is unclear to ALL of it's citizen base.

  • mchlpickle Aug 13, 2008

    Just start kill'n the cats and everyone will be treated equal

  • Igor Aug 13, 2008

    Sorry...civilization has rules, and Sanford's rules, love them or leave them, are no chickens in the yard...

  • Of The South Aug 13, 2008

    ...and another aspect of Southern culture gets torn away. I hate when people throw the word "redneck" around. Move away if you don't like the culture here. These policies and procedures are getting ridiculous and way out of hand.

  • GWALLY Aug 13, 2008

    Ok.....so lets talk about why the the ordanance really exists in the first place. Being politically correct.....there are numerous members from a country just south of the US who have a propensity to maintain a barnyard at any residenance they inhabit....!!! Is this becoming clearer for you now??????

  • Isabella Aug 13, 2008

    It isn't as though Sanford were a sprawling metro city with no green lawns (i.e. downtown New York, Chicago, etc). Chickens are not noisy (you do not need a rooster), help keep ticks under control and provide a family with a daily supply of eggs. How is this harming anyone else? As thewayitis mentioned, cats are a much, much bigger nuisance than chickens would ever be and they are allowed to roam wherever.
    Let people keep chickens if they have a yard and a coup. Stop sticking your nose into other people's lives. Soon, you won't be able to have a garden to grow vegetables because the weeds may become "unsightly".