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RE: backyard chickens

From: Heineck, Arlinda A <"Heineck,>
Date: Mon, 29 Feb 2016 23:17:42 +0000

Hello Laura,

Yes, you are allowed to have chickens in the City, subject to a few regulations. The regulations can be found in Chapter 9, Section 9.26 of the City’s Municipal Code www.menlopark.org/municipalcode<http://www.menlopark.org/municipalcode> but I will also list them here.


1) You are allowed to keep up to 50 poultry and rabbits for each ¼ acre of lot area (10,890 square feet), or the same proportionate number on lots having a greater or lesser area. More than the allowed number and more than the allowed number within 100 feet of any dwelling can be allowed subject to a permit granted by the City Council.

2) Any area, yard or coop for poultry must maintain a minimum distance from any dwelling (house) of 30 feet unless the poultry do not have access to the area for more than 6 hours during any day.

3) Poultry are not allowed to run at large (meaning not within the immediate possession or control of some person) within the city.

4) Yards and coops must be maintained in a clean and sanitary manner (cleaned at least twice in a week and more often if required).

5) It is unlawful to keep any poultry which by any sound or cry disturbs the peace and quiet of any neighborhood to such an extent as to interfere with the reasonable and comfortable enjoyment of life or property. In this case, the poultry would be deemed a menace and would constitute a public nuisance.

A coop is defined as an enclosure that is roofed or has an overhead covering of wire or other materials and which is used or intended as shelter for any poultry or animal. Depending on the design and size of the coop, it may trigger a requirement for a building permit and have other setback and height limitations. In general, a coop less than 64 square feet in area and less than 8 feet in height does not require a building permit.

If you would like additional help with determining your lot size or whether or not a building permit would be required for a coop, please feel free to visit City Hall and talk with one of the staff planners at the public counter. The public counter is open from 1:00 to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. on alternate Fridays. You are also welcome to call the Planning Department at 650-330-6702.

I hope you find this information helpful and good luck with your project.


Arlinda Heineck
Community Development Director
650-330-6715

From: Laura Keller [mailto:laura.wolfson_at_(domainremoved)
Sent: Saturday, February 27, 2016 2:39 PM
To: _CCIN
Subject: backyard chickens

Hi! We are trying to understand if our backyard is allowed to have chickens. I understand they must be 30 feet from a residence. Our backyard is only 50 feet wide so we aren't 30 feet from the property line of our neighbors, but it seems that we might still be 30 feet from their houses (though not their garages). How can we determine whether our backyard is suitable for a few chickens?

Thank you!
Laura
Received on Mon Feb 29 2016 - 15:22:24 PST

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