Chicken enthusiasts are now able to apply to keep hens in the City of Edmonton. The city previously ran a pilot program which allowed 50 sites to keep backyard hens, but that cap was lifted back in May.

Now, interested residents can apply through the city’s website to keep the birds.

The city provides an introductory course for urban chicken keepers, and then residents must build a chicken coop and run and have the site approved by city inspectors.

The program came as a result of a suggestion brought forward by Ward 4 Coun. Aaron Paquette. He celebrated the lifting of the cap with some choice chicken puns Thursday.

"Ward 4 residents and frankly all Edmontonians told me that the Urban Hen pilot was a big success," Paquette said in a statement. "Residents are feeling peckish for local, backyard food. Urban hens are a great addition to our growing local food scene. It was plain common-sense for me to ask for the cap to be lifted."

Each approved household must keep a minimum of three hens, and can keep up to six. Roosters are not allowed. The minimum age for hens in the city is 16-weeks-old.

The city has an online map that shows where hens are currently living in the city.

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