Is Syracuse ready for urban chickens?

My son and daughter-in-law live out in the country and they have 16 chickens. I’m so jealous, not of the effort that it takes to raise chickens, as little as it appears to be, but of the delicious eggs they have every day. I’ve been eating some of them and it’s quite an eye-opener. They’ve got really bright orange yolks and they scramble up to a warm, sunny yellow, unlike the anemic things you get at the grocery store. Moreover, I trust what these chickens have been eating: mostly organic kitchen scraps.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that Newsweek has an article this week about urban chickens. Take a look! From the article:

There are a host of reasons for the growing trend. “Locavores” hope to avoid the carbon emissions and energy consumption that come with transporting food. Chicken owners and poultry experts say eggs from backyard chickens are tastier and can be more nutritious, with higher levels of supplements like omega-3 fatty acids. Their production cost is cheap: you can buy chickens for as little as a couple of dollars, and three hens will likely average about two eggs a day. You can also use their waste to help revitalize a garden. “There’ve been recalls on everything from beef to spinach, and I think people want to have peace of mind knowing their food is coming from a very trusted source,” says LaBadie. “As gas prices go up, and people realize how food is connected to oil and transportation, they are bound to realize they can get a higher quality product cheaper if they get it locally.”

So here are my questions:

– Do you know anyone who remembers urban chickens during WWII?
– Do you know of anyone who is keeping chickens somewhere in Syracuse?
– Do you think it’s an idea whose time has come?

5 thoughts on “Is Syracuse ready for urban chickens?”

  1. There are indeed some chickens – or at least some roosters – being kept within city limits – but it’s not legal. Today’s Syracuse newspaper article about efforts to start a local Slow Food chapter mentions that fact.

    In the 1990’s I spent several years living in an apartment off South Salina Street near Valley Plaza. A neighbor on the street behind me had a rooster that woke me up almost every morning at the break of dawn. I’m guessing that there were hens there as well but I never investigated.

  2. I have 5 chickens and they are the way to go, my kids learn responsibility, I clean the coop with new straw 1ce a week and I dont keep roosters. I live just out side the city (onondaga)and they are great.

  3. I read that in the Town of Onondaga, we are not allowed to have “LIVE STOCK” unless we have 3 or more acres;I also read that we are allowed to have chickens on our property, 3/4 of an acre, but can’t have a rooster, go figure!

  4. You don’t need a rooster unless you want to breed chickens. Hens lay without the aggravation of a rooster.

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