More county residents could soon raise chickens at home for food.

Courtesy Photo

After community members expressed increased interest in raising food at home, Pima County Development Services has proposed an amendment to county code relating to the raising of chickens in residential zones. 

The proposed zoning amendment would permit the keeping of female chickens for personal food production in small, residential zones where it currently is prohibited. 

Affected zoning designations could include TH Trailer Homesite, CR-4 Mixed-Dwelling Type, CR-5 Multiple Residence, CMH-1 and -2 County Manufactured and Mobile Home and MU Multiple Use zones.

Typically, these are properties with lot sizes smaller than 8,000 square feet. 

Under the proposed text amendment, single-family lots or manufactured home lots 6,000 square feet or larger could keep up to eight female chickens. Single-family lots or manufactured home lots 6,000 square feet or smaller could keep up to four female chickens. Neither retail sales nor the keeping of male chickens, roosters or cockerels would be permitted. Additionally, the amendment would not override any private residential restrictions or covenants recorded that prohibit the raising of chickens.

Related to possible regulation on keeping chickens, another proposed amendment would simplify the code to allow ratites (ostrich and emu) in rural and limited residential zones, subject to the same requirements as livestock (one animal per 10,000 square feet of lot space).

The Planning and Zoning Commission will review the proposed code amendment at a public hearing, likely in early fall, and forward its recommendation to the Board of Supervisors for approval. Pima County’s Planning Division invites public comment on the proposed Zoning Code text amendment.

Comments may be emailed to Mark.Holden@pima.gov and provided in-person at commission and board public hearings.

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