OPINION: New backyard chicken bylaw ruffles some feathers

by | Oct 24, 2017 | City News, Opinion

Dan Caudle
Managing Editor

Feathers are ruffled due to the new Toronto bylaws allowing residences in certain wards to now keep chickens in their backyards.

Cracking up the opposition, the vote was tallied at 23-14 approving this pilot project in four wards, but it’s too early to put all your eggs in one basket. Residences in wards 5, 13, 21 and 32 will be able to hatch a plan on how they are going to keep their chickens on their property.

Although they may be winging it, I think this could provide to be a sustainable option for those who love livestock and eggs.

It seems like a good deal for Toronto residents, being allowed to grow and maintain their own poultry allows them freedom from the chicken retailers.

Hatching this plan came with a lot of opposition as many view chickens as loud and dirty animals, but they do provide a stable source of protein.

Ward 7 Councilor Giorgio Mammoliti, who abstained from voting due to personal reasons, laid an egg about the issue.

“What the flock is going on at City Hall?,” Mammoliti said before votes were tallied. “My parks are a mess, my roads are a mess. I can’t get staff out to do anything. But here we like to squawk like the chickens we’re talking about. I’m going to fly the coop on this vote.”

Although this is a new trend for Toronto, many other municipalities in Ontario already allow chickens on residences. These include Brampton, Caledon, Kingston and Niagara Falls.

I believe this is not only a great way for residents to grow their own food, but it could also teach us a practical aspect of how to live slightly off the grid. Growing up, I had many neighbours that had chicken coops, and there was never an issue with noise or smell.

In the end, one has to wonder if farming conglomerates would be concerned with the average urban residences wetting their beaks in livestock with their own chickens, they could essentially undercut from supercenters. But chickens always come home to roost, so only time will tell.