October 13, 2009 6 comments

Please check out:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/185937923592/

 (all typos belong to COJchickens)



August 24, 2015:

As expected (and basically desired) the Janesville City Council has kept the public hearing open, and is allowing the Plan Commission, Sustainable Janesville Committee (SJC) sponsoring Council members, City Staff, and other interested parties to work out the remaining concerns that have been raised by Plan Commission and SJC earlier this month. Many of these concerns are simple wording issues that will be handled by staff, and others are more involved that require composing lists of resources and “best practices” handouts for the citizens that apply for permits. There is also the matter of creating a “Friends Group” in collaboration with the 4-H Poultry Division, et al.

Please continue to have interested citizens email their support to the Janesville City Council: citycouncil@ci.janesville.wi.us If you are not a citizen from Janesville, yet perhaps you keep chickens in your town, or can relay information to the Council concerning how the ordinance has impacted (or not) your community, please do not hesitate to tell your experience. Thank you to everyone for your continued support and assistance on this! 

Gather all of your 4-H friends, and all of your fellow pet owners, all of your fellow “foodies”, all of your experts on poultry zoonoses – WAIT… Don’t want chickens? Don’t like the County Fair? Don’t know what “poultry zoonoses” means, or even how to say it? Then FIND OUT MORE, before you talk about how much YOU hate chickens, and therefore no one else should have them, either!  There’s a reason WHY hundreds and hundreds of towns and cities have changed their ordinance to include hens, just in the last 5 years alone! :)


Check out this great Southern Wisconsin blog!



Backyard Chickens 101
Register Here: https://activenet021.active.com/delavanparkrec/servlet/registrationmain.sdi?pubnav_index=1
Meeting Dates Thursday, January 31, 2013 from 6pm to 7pm
Location Community Centre, 826 E. Geneva St., Delavan
Price Standard charge: Free
Status ?? openings remaining
Ages At least 18 but less than 110
Gender Coed
Hide Details
Type Activity
Activity Primary Category Adult Programs
Activity # 468
Session 1
Season Winter/Spring 2013
Are you interested in raising chickens in your backyard? If so Twain Lockhart has a presentation for you! He will go over how to get started with backyard chickens. Reasons you may want to get back-yard chickens, things you need to start, and how to get started. The presentation will include a time line for you to get started and what to expect.



Way to get your hens!!!


Does your town/city have an ordinance allowing chickens within the urban area?  Send me an e-mail with the details!  I would like to compile a comprehensive list of who allows what, how many, where at, etc.  Are you working on an ordinance change to allow chickens in your town? Let me know how it goes!



GOOD LUCK OSHKOSH, WI!  GO PEEPS!  With all of the recent egg recalls, you would think this would be easy! and… if you have ever WONDERED where those 99 cents a dozen eggs at the convenience store actually come from — look up factory farms, and battery cages on the Internet. California to Ban Caged Hens by 2015


Lately On Facebook:

Thanks Stoughton! Glad my 300 hours of time, professional contacts made, 20-some books read, 30 pages of report, was well spent for SOMEONE! ; ) I have just sent a message to a council member in Oshkosh — inviting THEM to use it, too! If EVERYONE around Janesville uses the FACTS, and allows urban hen keeping, eventually, (perhaps) Janesville will follow in their footstep?

Chickens in Stoughton

Chickens in Stoughton also wants to thank City of Janesville Chickens? for providing 100s of hours of research, which we took advantage of in passing our local chicken ordinance.

August 20 at 3:18pm


Cojchicken’s interesting FACTS:

Cockroaches, turtles and lizards carry salmonella.

A chicken’s water supply is not likely to attract extra rodents.

Does your potted plant on the deck or your birdbath attract rodents?

A chicken’s food dish is not likely to attract extra rodents.

Do your wild bird feeders, dog/cat bowls, trash cans attract rodents?

According to a 2008 Newsweek article, urban agriculture expert Jennifer Blecha’s research showed  that 65 percent of major cities allowed urban chickens, and 40 percent permitted roosters. The Newsweek piece, called “The New Coop de Ville: the craze for urban poultry farming,” attributes the prevalence of these city birds at least partly to the local food movement.




Apparently, there seems to be confusion as to how the urban hen keeping issue came to be, in Janesville.

For anyone that does care:

It has been brought up via e-mail, phone calls, and media by various Janesville residents over the course of many years.  I had nothing to do with that.

Spring/Summer 2009: Mr. David Innis brought copies of Madison WI’s current ordinance to Janesville City ‘s Council, in the hopes of seeing it on the agenda.

I had nothing to do with that, either.  I did not know David Innis.

In the middle of October, 2009:  It occurred to me that that keeping  a few hens in my family’s backyard might be a relatively easy, cost-effective and fun way to support my personal interest in increasing self-reliance.   I started to look into Urban hen keeping, how to do it, Janesville’s ordinances regarding keeping hens in town, and other cities’ ordinances regarding keeping hens.  I looked for a group in Janesville that might already be working on the ordinance.  Seeing none, I started COJchickens, merely with the intention of finding people with the interest to pursue taking an ordinance change to the Council.  I knew there would b a lot of work to do, to be ready to go to the Council with this issue.

November, 16th, 2009:  an article in the Janesville Gazette informed me that David Innis had 2 Council Members as sponsors to look into changing the ordinance for Janesville.  I had nothing to do with that.   (I still did not know David Innis.  I did not meet David Innis until the Plan Commission’s public hearing on February 15, 2010.)

So, I spent the next 3 months, really cranking up my original efforts to get as many of the things done that I could, that I felt would be necessary for this to be on the agenda.  For skeptics out there, I was very thorough with my research, and my efforts.   My “Citizen Report” is essentially a summary, for the benefit of the Council,  of more than 20 books and documentaries, (yes, I read them completely), countless hours on the internet, plenty of conversation with hen owners all over the world, and local State of Wisconsin experts — from 4-H leaders to Department of Animal Sciences, Extension Poultry Specialist / Poultry Science Department.  The “Citizen Report,” as well as all of my other documents were distributed to the City — more than 20 copies, plus e-mail links.

I would have done more, if I had not run out of time.  I essentially worked on this for hundreds of hours, hoping that everyone would learn something new.  However, many people that were on the decision-making end of things had already made up their mind on this issue before they had ever even heard of me, my reports, or the citizens of Janesville that make up or support  COJchickens.

Our proposed ordinances contained various restrictions to cover concerns.  (Madison’s, or the long draft I did, which includes variance permits.)

The City chose to create an ordinance of their own to use.  This ordinance became the ordinance on the Council’s agenda.  The City’s ordinance did not have many guidelines or restrictions, and this led to many of the concerns that Janesville’s Council expressed when they rejected the ordinance.

Whatever the personal opinions were on the Council, the motion that was voted on was against the City’s ordinance proposal, not OUR ordinance ideas, and not the keeping of hens in town.

We have a lot of work to do to be ready and able to take this issue forward.

It will take time, as we obviously need support from City Council for this effort.

Feb. 22, 2010

ROUND ONE: CITY – One.  PEEPS – Chopping block.
(Anyone know the name of a good privacy fence contractor??? Ha ha… ha…)


You all ROCKED.  Egg-cellent!

Feb. 13, 2010
“COJchickens”@ Mounds Pet Food store here in Janesville, WI on February 13, 2010 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. in conjunction with Rock-Valley 4-H Team Leader Cindy, and TWO GUEST HENS!!!!! HUGE success!!  Thanks to Mounds for letting us use their pet hen product lines for our display, and letting us hang out!!  We were out there until almost 3:30.  MANY people stopped to ask questions, sign the petition, and hug the hens!  Nearly every person that walked past us was positive about the proposed ordinance change — there were NOT very many “Negative Nancies” on Saturday.  What a positive, fun-filled day!!  Janesville, you rock!  I would like to point out that the hens were there from 11 until past 2:00.  They barely made ANY noises at all, let alone LOUD ones.  The birds did not poop on the floor, or on any person handling them.  (How undignified! ; )  –Also, they certainly weren’t smelly!  Not even the few droppings that were on the bottom of their carrier!  However, a customer’s dog waiting to go through the checkout line DID have an accident, that managed to span an entire aisle.  Sorry, the dog’s name shall remain anonymous for privacy reasons.  ; )  And may I mention that TWO separate people thought one of the chickens was actually a monkey?  Perhaps we need more education on chickens for the people…

Special thanks to WCLO’s Mike Austin for repeatedly allowing  people to cackle over the air waves about chickens!!



Live in the City of Janesville, WI?  Want to allow chickens in town?  Send your full name and Janesville address to the email address below to sign the pro-chicken petition!  Want to help with the petitioning?  Direct people to this page, or collect the information from any adult with a City of Janesville residence that would like chickens to be allowed in Janesville.

Contact: CityOfJanesvilleChickens@gmail.com


2010 Schedule:

Location: Municipal Building, 18 N. Jackson Street, Janesville WI 53546.  Council Chambers (Room #417) – 4th Floor
January 25th (City Council 7:00 PM) – Intro and schedule Public Hearing
February 1st (Plan Commission 6:30 pm) –   Intro and schedule Public Hearing
February 15th (Plan Commission 6:30 pm) – Public Hearing
February 22nd (City Council 7:00 PM) – Public Hearing and Action

Short list of cities that allow urban chickens in their ordinances:

Fort Atkinson, WI. Green Bay WI.  Jefferson, WI.  Madison, WI. Neenah, WI. Oshkosh, WI. . Stoughton, WI.  River Hills, WI. Milwaukee, WI.  Beloit WI. Edgerton, WI. Delevan, WI. Manasha WI.  Racine WI. Clintonville WI. Baraboo WI.  Plymouth WI. Friendship WI. Whitewater WI. LaCrosse WI. Wauwatosa WI. Concord, NH. New Haven CT. San Francisco CA.  Portage, MI. Minneapolis MN. Boston MA. Phoenix AZ. Chicago IL. New York City. Syracuse NY. Anaheim CA. Mobile AL. New Orleans LA. Buffalo NY. Hartford CT. Baltimore MD. Portland OR. Houston TX. Miami FL. San Jose CA. Las Vegas NV. Suisun City, CA-   3 hens, no roosters. Fairfield, CA- 3 hens   no roosters. Vallejo, CA-  25  birds  roosters/hens combined. Vacaville-      No limit!  Subject to noise/bothering neighbors. Topeka KS. Santa Rosa CA. Santa Fe NM. Little Rock AK. Burlington VT. Richmond VA. San Antonio TX. Albuquerque NM. Bakersfield CA. Des Moines IA. Winston-Salem NC. Greensboro NC.  Williamston SC. Lafayette CA. Seattle WA. Oakland CA. Denver CO. Dallas TX. Laredo TX. Salt Lake City UT. St. Louis MO. Berkeley CA. Spokane WA. Indianapolis IN. Lexington KY. Louisville KY. Califon NJ.

Does YOUR town/city in the U.S. allow urban hen keeping?  Let me know!


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