Flower Mound OKs backyard henhouse proposal

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by STEVE STOLER

WFAA

Posted on September 17, 2012 at 8:19 PM

FLOWER MOUND – Chickens were on the agenda at Flower Mound's Town Council meeting Monday night. The town joined Denton as the latest local government to consider easing restrictions that would allow more homeowners to raise poultry.

In a 3-2 vote, Council members approved a proposal to permit Flower Mound residents to maintain up to four hens per property.

Mark Glover and his family started raising chickens a year ago. They wanted the chickens to get rid of fleas in their front yard, "and we got chickens, and they pretty well cleaned up the fleas within 30 days," said Glover.

The Glovers' chickens are legal since they have more land than the required one acre. Other Flower Mound homeowners, like Jennifer Paul, want chickens, but don't have enough space. She wants them for their fresh eggs. 

"You know what's going into your chicken," said Paul. "Our chicken only eats the food we give them and natural things in the ground."

Chicken backers spent months trying to persuade the town to ease their restrictions. But the town's animal services department raised a variety of concerns, including possible health consequences, from fecal matter and odor to rats and mice. 

They argued allowing more chickens would attract a plethora of predators and place an unnecessary burden on their officers. 

"They're really not very loud," said Glover. "At the loudest, their decibel level is about what human conversation is.

"Just like any other pet, you have to take care of them and clean up after them and feed them," said Paul. "As long as you do that like you would with your dog, it really shouldn't be a problem."

Denton City Council members may also be voting soon on easing chicken restrictions. The city staff there is recommending a maximum of eight hens per household, but no roosters, which should address noise concerns. 

E-mail sstoler@wfaa.com

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