Photo of two chickens roaming on a grassy area

Background Summary

As a result of a request presented to the Township's Planning/Building/Environmental Committee on September 11, 2023, Township Staff facilitated preliminary public discussion and collected feedback regarding the appropriateness of permitting chickens on a small scale basis accessory to residential use. This is often referred to as “backyard chickens.”

A variety of scenarios must be given consideration, including the appropriateness of backyard chickens on residential lots in Smithville, residential lots in hamlets and residential lots in the agricultural area.

Supporters of backyard chickens have cited benefits related to mental health, sustainability, food quality, ethical animal treatment and alleviation of poverty. Those who oppose backyard chickens have focused on concerns relating to disease, odour, noise and potential for attracting predators.


Public Consultation

The first round of public consultation has concluded.

  • An online survey opened on January 9 and closed at noon on March 15.
  • A Public Meeting was held on February 12.

Please note that a second round of public consultation will be held, to garner public feedback about staff recommendations. Please stay tuned for more information.

Next Steps

Staff will review results of research, consultation with relevant agencies, as well as all of the feedback gathered through public consultation. A recommendation report will be presented at a future Planning / Building / Environmental Committee meeting for deliberation.