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Residents permitted to have urban hens.At the May 22 Council meeting, Red Deer County Council approved an Animal Control Bylaw. Red Deer County’s Economic Development Strategy identified Agricultural Development as a strategic priority and one of the initiatives discussed was ‘Urban Hens.’ Public consultation, in relation to allowing urban chickens within the urban districts of Red Deer County, was performed. Results showed interest in an Urban Hen program.On parcels zoned as Country Residential District (R-1) 1.99 acres or less in size, six urban hens may be allowed without an urban hen permit. On residential low density parcels within Hamlets and manufactured home parks, up to four urban hens will be allowed with an urban hen permit. Property owners can obtain these urban hen permit applications on the County website at www.rdcounty.ca.For residents within the low density residential parcels within Springbrook, up to 10 permits will be issued. Permits will expire December 31 of each year. The maximum number of urban hen permits that may be issued for the year shall be two per each Red Deer County Hamlet (excluding Springbrook). Conditions would be placed on the Urban Hen permits to ensure sanitary conditions and to prohibit roosters.All livestock owners, including urban hen owners, are required to obtain a Premises Identification Number through Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. For more information, call the Alberta Ag-Info Centre at 403.310.3276.A survey conducted by the County showed that 73 per cent of respondents believed that livestock should be allowed on parcels two or more acres in size. Therefore, the bylaw will allow one animal unit on two to three acre properties and two units on properties three to 10 acres in size. Any Country Residential parcel over 10 acres in size and agricultural zoned parcels do not have limits on the number of livestock. If you are currently not in conformance with this bylaw, exceptions may be granted. Please call the County office for more information.The existing Dog Control Bylaw has been amalgamated into the Animal Control Bylaw.For more information on the Animal Control Bylaw or urban hens, please contact Red Deer County Planning and Development Services at 403.350.2170.