Animal Regulation amendment: hens, hens and more hens

If you want more hens in your backyard, you can now have them.If you want more hens in your backyard, you can now have them.

  • Wed Jun 29th, 2016 11:00am
  • News

Barbara Latkowski

Caledonia Courier

If you want more hens in your backyard, you can now have them.

The Fort St. James District Council amended the Animal Regulation Bylaw No. 624 on June 22, 2016.

The amendment will allow all residents living on R-1 (single family residential) to keep up to four hens for personal use.

Hen means a domesticated female chicken that is at least four months old.

Roosters are prohibited.

According to District, no neighborhood health, environmental or nuisance problems may result from the keeping of hens.

A person who keeps one or two more hens, must:

–          Reside on the property where the hens are kept or obtain a written permission from the property owner.

–          Situate hens in a back or side yard which is fully fenced.

–          Situate coops at least one and a half meters from the property line and three meters from windows and doors of a dwelling.

–          Provide each hen with at least 0.5 meters squared of coop floor area and 1.0 meters squared of roofed outdoor enclosure.

–          Provide and maintain in each coop at least one perch for each hen that is 15 centimeters long and one nest box.

–          Not keep hens in a cage.

–          Provide each hen with food, water, shelter, light, ventilation, veterinary care and opportunities for essential behaviors such as scratching, dust-bathing and roosting. All are required in maintaining good hen health.

–          Maintain enclosure in good repair to prevent entrance by other animals and keep enclosure in sanitary condition that is free of vermin and obnoxious smells and substances.

–          Keep hens for personal use only. Do not sell eggs, manure, meat or other products derived from hens.

–          Do not slaughter or attempt to euthanize a hen on the property.

Residents living in RU-1, RU-2 or RU-3 are unaffected by this bylaw amendment.

If you have any questions regarding the amendment bylaw, please contact: Lina Gasser, deputy corporate officer, at: (250) 996-8322 or email at:

If you have any complaints or concerns regarding hens please contact the District’s Bylaw Officer, Rob Clarke at: (250) 996-8233 or email at: