JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Backyard hens are now permitted in Jacksonville.
Action News was at City Hall as Lauren Trad was issued the first permit this morning.
Action News Lynnsey Gardner takes you inside this mother's three year fight to change city law.
It's a battle she has won for now.
Paprika, Poppyseed, Peppercorn and Chile are finally back in their Southside coop.
Thanks to one tenacious owner, a Jacksonville mother of two young girls, and if you ask her, four more -- her beloved backyard hens.
"This is where I got cited in Sept. of 2011," Trad said.
Trad faced a fine of $250 a day from the city, or get rid of her hens.
She did neither.
Instead, she found them temporary housing, and called her Councilman Don Redman.
Trad organized a petition, and attended meeting after meeting at City Hall.
Today, Trad was back on the same steps but this time, hen in hand.
Action News was there as she was granted permit #1, and there later today as she finally took her hens back home.
"The best thing is if you don't like how something is, get involved. Be active in your community. Our politicians are there to lead the city but they're supposed to do what the citizens want," Trad said.
Right now, this is a two year pilot program, but Trad has her eye on the next goal, a permanent permit.
"I'm sure you'll see some issues here and there because there are always some irresponsible pet owners just like there are irresponsible parents in our world but most people take good care of their animals and we won't have any problems at all," Trad said.
After the initial cost of buying the chickens and the coop, Trad says they only cost $15 a month to feed. The payoff: 80/100 eggs every month.
There is the concern diseases. In 2012, a salmonella outbreak started with backyard hens in Ohio. It spread to 27 states, sickening nearly 200 people.
Here is a link for CDC guidelines
for backyard hens.
The rules for backyard hens is below:
- 5 backyard hens - $25
- You must pass a certification course to get one from the planning department
- Only 300 will be issued for the pilot program