Festus Chicken Fears Subside Slightly

3 Sep

I wrote here about the unwillingness of the Festus City Council to allow city residents to own chickens. Well, on August 22, the council relented, according to the August 30 Leader, and voted to allow chickens under the following conditions:

  • Half-acre minimum lot size
  • Four chickens maximum
  • No roosters
  • One-time $30 fee
  • Leg bands required
  • Some rules about housing and lot setbacks

I think these rules are too stringent. As I said before, this is Festus, not St. Louis or Chicago. A half-acre is too high of a minimum. The article mentioned that many people have been disappointed, because they want chickens but don’t have that much land. Chickens can be kept on much smaller lots, including your standard city lot.

The leg-banding rule is unnecessary, too. Do they think there will be so many chickens it will be hard to keep track of whose chickens are whose? The city will know who owns chickens, that is info enough.

Also, the 4-bird limit is too low. De Soto instituted a much more sensible 6-bird limit. Especially when Festus’ lot minimum is so high, they could easily allow more chickens.

The council definitely suggested that this is more or less a trial run. Dale Persch, who voted yes, said, “If it doesn’t work, we can get rid of it.” Kathy Murphy, who voted no, said she doesn’t want any raccoons or hawks. Well, if she doesn’t want raccoons, she had better ban trash cans. Besides, when we had coons on our porch, my mama just chased them off with a broomstick. And what’s wrong with hawks?

Tim Montgomery was the other no vote on this ordinance. Keep an eye on this; hopefully now that the residents will get a taste of chickens, they will demand that these rules be loosened up.


One Response to “Festus Chicken Fears Subside Slightly”


  1. Chickens Continue to Spread « Jefferson County Penknife - January 21, 2013

    […] per year for three years, then becomes permanent, barring any complaints. This is much better than Festus’ stringent rules. I commend the Byrnes Mill council for […]


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