Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Illegal Tampa City Chickens

I have readers everywhere but for those of you in the City of Tampa may be surprised to know that in the city you cannot keep chickens... well you can but you would have to own a entire city block (at least 200x200 from any other persons property).. Do you have that much land? The likely story here is you do not most city blocks are 50 x 100 or a variation of that, sometimes smaller. Legally you cannot keep chickens (even though MANY do~ from davis island to forest hills) but what can you do to help??

On Thursday.. APRIL 26th, 2012 @ 9am the Tampa city council will hold a workshop to determine if the current laws on chicken keeping should be rewritten..

Cant make the meeting? Email them HERE.. in fact I think everyone even those not in Tampa should write them a well written email about keeping chickens as pets, chicken smarts, and the joys of keeping chickens.

One of our council members said chickens can never be pets and it was absurd to think they could. Lets all send them pictures of us, our children, other pets... holding, petting, caring for our chickens.

~~~~I want to share a little story about my current situation~~~~
I have 6 hens no roosters, they quietly cluck around happily pecking the ground and have NEVER got out of my fence, the only time they make a little noise is when laying a egg (once every 24 hours)...
My next door neighbor has 3 hens and a rooster.. the rooster crows off and on throughout the day but with my windows closed I cannot hear it and I find the sound actually really cool (though I am sure other neighbors do not and they are currently trying to sell the rooster)..
The neighbors behind my own 2 rottweilers and anytime we walk into our backyard they run to the fence and bark nonstop, snarling, and banging the chain link fence (please mind I have a 3 year old and are scared what would happen if the dog decides to jump that fence)... these same dogs bark all night long when left out, they bark at a bird flying by, a squirrel in a tree, a car in the street...
Now tell me which of these are the worst?
I think the totally legal dogs with their nonstop barking/ yapping/ howling are way more annoying and scary then even the crowing rooster right next door.

Make your own choice and either attend the council meetings or email the crap outta them! :)

I say let the nuisance law kick in for owners who cannot contain their chickens, leave stinky coops or chickens that wake neighbors, dig flower beds... same as it would for the dogs, cats, or other legal birds...



  1. i want Tampa to make them legal, so we can get them legalized in Jacksonville! We want them in our backyard ,but can't because we're right in the city. :(

  2. VERY well said, Brittany! The dog issue is clearly more of a nuisance and safety issue for many people. not just your neighborhood! Good luck with the legalities!

  3. Thanks for posting, Brittany. I feel the same way! Some people complain about chickens being noisy or smelly, but there are already laws saying that NONE of your animals can be noisy or smelly. And they don't even have a problem with other types of birds! You can have a macaw or a cockatoo, but not a chicken. It just doesn't really make sense to specifically outlaw chickens.

    If anyone else wants a little more info about chickens in Tampa (though Brittany covered it very well), please visit

  4. I live here in Lake County and it is the same situation. Many of the cities allow residents to keep chickens, but because I live in the county, in a residentially zoned area (not agricultural) I am not allowed to own even 1 chicken.
    I've emailed the county commissioners about it, but any help from other Lake Countyers(ites?) would be greatly appreciated.

  5. I'm pretty sure the "nonstop barking/ yapping/ howling dogs" is not "totally legal." If you check with animal control, I think you will find that it is not.


  6. My point was I guess not understood.. dogs are totally legal even with their yapping, howling, barking, digging, pooping everywhere habits, Right? So why shouldn't chickens be legal with their quiet, pecking, scratching habits? The same law should affect both the dog and chickens... the nuisance law

  7. Tell me more about the Apr 26 workshop. I am off on Thursdays and Fridays. I would have to take my daughter (she is 5) and doesn't go to school on Thursdays and Fridays. We so want to make our next pets chickens. Hubby is actually going to talk to Mr. Holloway tomorrow at the Seminole Hts Sunday market about how much a coop will run us. Where did you find the info about the workshop? Where is it suppose to be held. I did some googling and only found info about the initial hearing a few weeks ago. City of Tampa website is not very user friendly....

  8. No their website is not.. the workshop is at
    Tampa City Hall, 3rd Floor Council Chambers 315 East Kennedy Blvd, Tampa, FL.. On Thursday April 26th starting at 9am.. the announcement about the workshop was made at the first meeting

  9. Trying to justify keeping an animal which is illegal to keep by saying these other animals which are legal to keep are doing illegal things makes little sense.

    It's a poor argument, and only servers to confuse the issue, so I would not use it.


  10. Im not trying to say that at all, Im sorry it came across that way, I was trying to share a story about my situation.. Dogs are ALWAYS going to bark and be noisy and poop everywhere thats the way they are.. for animals like the ones mentioned in my story if someone calls animal control on them the person will get a warning and checked out... all my story was meant to express is that i feel chickens should be given the same rights as other animals and if they are noisy, stinky, or fence hoppers they should have animal control called on them.

    Thanks for pointing out that it could be read another way. :) Please read my email that I sent to them because it wasnt this. Thanks again for commenting! :)

  11. I recently moved to Tampa from Jacksonville (where we could have chickens because we had a much larger yard). I had to give away my 4 girls when I moved here. Chickens make great pets and until you've had a fresh egg, you haven't eaten! We support residential chickens (no roosters). I also have a cat and a dog, both of whom got along fine with the chickens.

    1. Hey I pay taxes own and my own home! Every one go to the work shop this is my 4th time in city council I lost my 4 girls already and allot of the people who own hens in Tampa are chickens themselves because they don't want let out a peep in fear of loosing their outlaw chickens. The one neighbor who complained about my girls said the clucking noise put him into eppilectic seizures. The guy plays the drums! Go figure! This guy even has a blog talking about sustainable living and being green. We need to make sure that it takes more than 1 person ruin it for every one.

  12. i have lived in Tampa now for 18 yrs. ( city limits. ) i do not want the problem of the roosters BUT do not mind the chickens. ( even tho they are constantly in my yard trying to eat the food our cockatiels we have dropped on the ground. ) as per usual even tho people have talked to these neighbors several times over the years about this... ( nicely ) they constantly end up with a rooster. so this year ... a rooster pops up and of course "its not theirs" and they "do not know where it came from.. " which is fine and dandy BUT it is in your yard making noise from 3am-9am. so the woman tells me not only is it legal ( incorrect ) but it is NOT her problem. now the only reason i said something is because i know someone is either going to catch it or kill it. now i am not a rocket scientist but ... since i know this ( and i will have to assume they do as well. ) to me this is irresponsible as a "pet" owner ( can we call the chickens pets ??? ) now i know regardless of what she said what would happen IF someone were to call the city. they would come trap it and send THEM the bill. in the end noone calls the city the rooster has been killed and she has the nerve to pull up to me in her car and accuse me of killing it. ( i have never killed an animal but do not like being awoken at 3am to a rooster my only crime... ) now IF i wanted to be the jerk she painting me into the picture as being i would just call the city and she wouldn't be able to have a single chicken let alone a rooster. now i am sure most of you responsibly own your chickens/roosters but she is obviously in violation of the city statutes. i have read it 3 times now and they do not comply with ANY of it. so i hope you can understand there are some bad apples ruining it for you all or are they really ? all we want is peace and quiet and compliance with the local laws regarding the situation. its not really all that different then keeping your dog on a leash OR putting up a fence.

  13. The ordinance limits owners to one hen per 1,000 square feet which no one listens to. The main problem with chickens is Mites, Lice and Fleas and Roosters are showing up. My neighborhood has a major outbreak of fleas. I treat my cats with Advantage twice a month but they are always scratching. Try treating an chicken!