We here at OS have been following the State College chicken zoning ordeal since the beginning of the semester. We’ve written about the issue here. For those not in the know, with the recent Borough Council vote, after paying a $15 fee, residents can keep up to four chickens in their backyards (I’m pretty certain Penn State students on campus still can’t keep them though, no matter how much you’d like fresh eggs in the morning). Now, at this point, the story is old news, but surfing the net, I saw that The Atlantic ran a story by Inara Verzemnieks discussing almost the very same issue… but in Portland, Oregon. See, in Portland, residents are allowed to keep up to three hens without a permit. Roosters, however, are left out in the cold. And because it’s Portland, the rain too. So, when residents raising chicks find one in the coop, they have a problem. There are some options though.
Turning them into dinner does not seem to be popular, sustainability benefits aside. Instead, other, more decidedly urban solutions have emerged. New postings pop up almost daily on Craigslist featuring roosters that need to leave Portland, pronto: “cute rooster who crows too loud for the neighbor. very sad to let him go, but we must until the city changes its mind.” Like personal ads for humans, many include descriptions of the ideal match, mentions of farm fantasies, and attempts to warn away the wrong partner: “Too small for a chicken dinner.”
Ah Craigslist! The only place you can find a date and sell poultry. I look forward to seeing many chicken-related posts on the site in the future, as people realize that maybe they nibbled off a bit more than they could chew.