Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Chicken query letter

Dear Midwest Living:

Who would have thought that keeping chickens could cause a debate in city council? In Ann Arbor, it has been come a hot topic during council meetings, sparking conversations on both sides of the fence.

In early 2009, the keeping of chickens within the city confines became legal in Ann Arbor. Ann Arbor has modeled their ordinance after a similar one that Madison, Wisc has in effect. As in Madison, certain restrictions apply- to protect both the hens and the nearby homeowners.

Only a small handful of permits have been applied for in Ann Arbor due to the timing of the legislation passing. However, it’s clear the movement is catching on across the midwest. It’s expected that this sping more permits will be issued in Ann Arbor. The sale of chicks has increased according to hatcherys; more homeowners are interested in taking up raising hens, both for the eggs as well as the entertainment chickens provide to their urban owners.

I think your readers would like to read about keeping chickens in their own back yards. There are numerous benefits- including answers to the most pressing question of all; Chickens provide outstanding fertilizer for gardens, with minimal smell. In addition, their eggs are more nutritious then store brought eggs. The hens do provide entertainment with minimal work once the coop is built. As people consider their food sources, people find knowing where their eggs come from is a benefit. And perhaps of greatest interest to readers- back yard chickens come in “Designer Hens” varieties! They can (and do) get hens to match their homes decor.

I think the time is here for an article outlining the purchasing and care of chickens in a urban envoinment. There are many possible side bars that can spring from this; a tie to your cooking section on the use of eggs, the benefits to gardens, and of course, the joys that chickens bring to their owners.

I look forward to hearing from you,

Annika Kramer
4109 Sylvan Road
Grass Lake, MI

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