Arlington Egg Project Hosting Pro-Chicken Events

by Katie Pyzyk January 19, 2012 at 10:45 am 3,639 41 Comments

Proponents of legalizing backyard chicken keeping in Arlington are hosting some events to advance their case.

A group called The Arlington Egg Project is holding its monthly meeting tonight at the Fairlington Community Center (3308 S. Stafford St.) at 7:00 p.m. The group’s goal is to get the county to change its ordinances so residents may keep a limited number of hens in their backyards.

Next month, the group is holding an “I Love Hens” evening of film and entertainment at the Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse (2903 Columbia Pike). The event will feature family friendly stand up comedy, a showing of the documentary “Mad City Chickens: The Return of the Urban Backyard Chicken!” and a conversation about urban agriculture with County Board Member Jay Fisette. Tickets for the February 16 event are $5.

The Arlington Egg Project cites numerous reasons for wanting backyard chickens, including reducing household food costs and increasing family nutrition. As part of its urban agriculture initiative, the County Board decided to create a task force this year that will look into a number of issues, including backyard hen raising.

  • Foghorn Leghorn

    Ah say, ah say – is this ah, ah, free uh-vent? A ’cause I’m all a-for it!

  • R0bespierre


  • Fox

    Where are they putting the henhouses again?

    • Robocallee

      We had 3 foxes raising hell in our hood last night.

      • phil

        were they on their way from Spider Kellys?

  • Garden City

    If you can keep chickens in your back yard for eggs, can I trap squirrels for meat?

    • Cooch

      You can trap them, but you have to release them in DC – it’s only fair. . .

  • brendan

    counter protest, KFC on lee hwy at 7:00pm.

  • research idea

    proponents of this initiative: i suggest spending a week in haiti where everyone has backyard chickens. note–chickens do not just squawk/cluck/smell bad in the morning.

    • FedUp

      Also, the county has a difficult time enforcing overcrowding and other local laws. How will they enforce the rules for backyard chickens?

    • John Fontain

      Yes, but Haiti doesn’t have the Idealized breed of chicken that this small group of Arlingtonian’s dreams of. Our chickens will apparently be much more refined.

    • xiann

      Let’s get rid of dogs too, they are loud and poop everywhere.

      • research idea

        show me a trainable chicken and i will concede defeat. dog EQ = 1.2, chicken EQ = .9 (generous estimate)

  • Kow

    Eet mor chikin.

  • I would like to start the Arlington Chicken Hawk Project and house them next door to backyard henhouses.

    • Bluemontsince1961

      LOL! “I’m a Chicken Hawk and I’m here to get a chicken!” “Now lisun her, bawy, now lisun here, I’m no chicken. But see that feller sleepin’ over yonder by that there dog house? Now that’s a chicken, bawy, that’s a chicken!”

      • I loved those cartoons!

        • Bluemontsince1961

          I did too! The Warner Brothers cartoons were my favorites when I was a kid. Nothing beat Bugs Bunny and Road Runner.

  • Suntastic

    What about goats?

    • Jim

      Yes, goats are every bit as appropriate for suburban back yards as chickens are. Everybody deserves fresh, pure milk from their own back yard goat.

  • duke

    Henery Hawk: Ah, I ain’t so little.
    Grandpa Hawk: I’ve told you Henery, why you’re too little to hunt chickens with me.
    Henery Hawk: You mean on account of what you was telling me that chickens are great, big monsters?
    Grandpa Hawk: Yep.
    Henery Hawk: They got big, sharp teeth and they live in the backyards of Arlington?
    Grandpa Hawk: That’s right.
    Henery Hawk: And they fight like demons, just like the county board?
    Grandpa Hawk: Right, that’s the Arlington Way!
    Henery Hawk: Well, what are we waiting for? Let’s go get some.

    • Bluemontsince1961

      LOL! Great dialog, Duke!

  • Chick-fil-a Cow

    Eat Mor Chikin

  • Dutch McAllister

    I just returned from a week long vacation in the Virgin Islands and I have to say it was very irritating hearing the roosters and hens that are in the more upscale parts of Charlotte Amalie crowing and cackling all the time while I was on vacation. I have to think hearing those sounds will be even more irritating when I have to get up to go to work. The folks who govern the county have come up with some crackpot ideas in the past, but this has to be one of the worst.

    • Chick-fil-a Cow

      Just buy them some pot @ ABC store and they will be quiet.

      • Curious George

        Pot in every chicken

    • Josh S

      I’m sure if you had just showed them the keys to your Audi, they would have understood and shut up.

    • no roosters

      The ordinance wouldn’t allow roosters, just hens. Roosters would be intolerable, agreed, because they start crowing at 3 am or whenever for that matter (I was just in Puerto Rico where the neighbor had a very loud, early-rising rooster). But hens don’t crow.

    • j

      I’m bleeding on the inside for your pian. Douche.

    • Rosslyn Bob

      Before going to Key West earlier this month I did not care about this issue. After returning from Key West I am 100% against chickens. No place for them in Arlington except in a menu. Last thing a person needs to smell on a hot summer day is a neighbor’s chicken coop.

  • Elmer

    Question for the “urban agriculturist “, Jay Fisette:

    Barnyard animals of the same gender are not known to
    have sex with each other. Does this mean:

    A) barnyard animals are homophobic; or,
    B) barnyard animals have more sense than some humans?

  • soarlslacker

    No hens in Arl unless they have Ivy League graduate degrees!

  • Dee Bunker

    Arlington County is too crowded to expect neighbors to tolerate chickens in their neighborhoods. Having grown up on a farm, I know firsthand that chicken poop is quite nasty. Hens may not crow in the early morning, but some of them become what we called “cluckers” as they age.

  • Barbin

    Buy your fresh eggs at the Farmer’s Markets.

  • Julia

    PLEASE, no chickens in urban Arlington. They are dirty animals, their waste is unsanitary and will be a blight on neighborhoods.

    PLUS, they would be prey for racoons, opossums and foxes.

    And do we really need to burden animal control with escaped chickens??

    We could have colonies of feral chickens.
    What would we do if neighbors acquire roosters?? Euthanize them?

    • Cooch

      “And do we really need to burden animal control” – please – they can’t be burdened with ANYTHING that doesn’t involve fundraising.

      If they just combined deer hunting season with progressive hunting season and feral chicken hunting season in Arlington, life would be grand.

    • Mr. Clarendon

      Considering the bad luck Arlington animal control had last year in its failure to catch the chikons at Roaches Run I wouldn’t count on them coming out victorious in the future…

  • atozwriter

    Maybe the county board will limit size and number of hens people can have? I love the idea of having 3 little hens (nothing like the 3 little pigs), but I also have personal experience with chicken poop. Yuck.

  • William

    Wonderful idea…if you live in Front Royal.

  • Earle

    A limit on the number you can keep based on land area would be good. What percentage of households in the next decade would keep chickens if this is allowed ? If it is anywhere approaching 1 in 5, we would be living in a situation quite different from today. To have that many people to want to keep chickens, I mean.

  • BoredHouseWife

    and good fertilizer, and easy if you have one of those rolling hen houses


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