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Friday, March 13, 2009

Nice SJ article on Corvallis Coop Tour

Pretty good article: Note that the Salem Chickens in the Yard (CITY) proposal forbids free-ranging, requiring the hens to be kept in a complete enclosure. The article starts out talking about chicken tractors, which allow you to move hens about in a protective enclosure so that they debug/degrub and fertilize different sections of lawn as you move the "tractor" about.
. . . Backyard chickens seem to be in the news a lot these days. With our free-falling economy, food-safety issues and a growing local food movement, people are finding comfort in becoming more self-sufficient.

The urban chicken movement is burgeoning — a 2008 Newsweek article claimed that 65 percent of major U.S. cities allow chicken keeping. Some Oregon communities, including Corvallis and Portland, and other cities around the country, including New York City, Los Angeles and Seattle, all permit urban chickens. Ordinances generally limit urban and suburban residents to five or fewer hens, with no roosters

Locally, a cadre of citizens in Salem called Chickens in the Yard is asking the City Council to allow residents to keep as many as five backyard hens — but no roosters. City code currently prohibits keeping livestock and fowl within city limits except for areas zoned residential-agricultural. The Salem City Council postponed action this week on a proposed amendment to city code that would allow chickens in the city.

If you are interested in seeing well-kept backyard chicken coops in action, come to Corvallis from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday to the "Cooped Up in Corvallis" self-guided chicken and duck coop tour.

On the tour, you'll get a chance to visit eight chicken and duck coop sites in the Corvallis community and talk with backyard fowl keepers who can give you first-hand tips for integrating poultry into your backyard.

The tour is a fundraiser for the Corvallis Environmental Center Edible Corvallis Initiative, a local community gardening project. Tickets cost $8 or $14 per family. Tickets and maps are available at the First Alternative Co-op (North & South Stores) or at the Corvallis Environmental Center, 214 SW Monroe Street, from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. For more information, contact Leslie Van Allen at youthgardenproject@live.com.