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e love the idea of the City of Parksville allowing people to raise and keep chickens in their yards — it’s happening in larger places, like Victoria — yet we’re sure the idea will probably ruffle a few feathers around here.
But, it shouldn’t.
Anything that helps people better feed their families — either through controlling your own quality or by saving money — has to be a good thing. Not only can it help in this manner, but rasing chickens is also a small way of teaching people — especially young people — about where our food comes from (‘it comes from the grocery store’ is not the answer we’re looking for).
In a small way, this idea can help people understand the food chain, how we produce it, how much we consume and the steps that must be taken to feed people.
Of course, it all has to be done right and monitored closely as there are a few issues that need to be addressed.
One is the potential smell. Can’t be worse than French Creek these days, but joking aside, owners must be responsible and keep their yards clean. The city’s unsightly premises bylaw would be put to good use here.
That same level of responsibility must also in effect when it comes to noise — and this is probably the biggest issue facing this proposal currently before city council. Not many people living in the suburbs love the incessant, early-morning crowing of a rooster. If they did, they’d own a farm.
Now, while there are benefits to getting up early and getting lots done, few people will cotton to the idea. So, the noise issue could make or break this deal.
Here’s where the city is going to have to step in. These back yard chicken coops cannot be breeding grounds and rooster hangouts. So, put into effect some anti-rooster laws. Or at least limit their use. Maybe make it a seasonal, tourist thing — like the Capistrano swallows.
– editorial by Steven Heywood