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Duck, duck ... chicken?

West High explores the Iowa City urban chicken ordinance.

A batch of chicks may be the perfect way to stay busy this spring. New laws allow Iowa City inhabitants to house up to four hens in a backyard as long as neighbors comply. Now is the time to bring home the peeping bundles and have them laying by summer. One local family made the plunge two years ago, and purchased six chicks to raise for eggs on their farm outside Iowa City. The two daughters, Natalie and Caroline Young, are now on their third batch of chicks, with counts now running up to over 30. Daily chores, completed with help from their mom, Susan, consist of feeding

their 16 two-week-old chicks in the basement and collecting eggs daily from the 14 grown hens kept outside in the big coop. The duo sells their “Organic eggs from happy hens!” to friends throughout the community and say their business has been a success. “We have loyal customers who love to know and support local businesses,” Caroline said. Funds are used to buy feed, make repairs and when the time is right, purchase new chicks. Not all families have the space and resources to keep 31 chickens on their property, but the Youngs encourage anyone interested to consider adopting four new daughters. “No neighbor is going to complain about your hens if eggs show up on their doorstep twice a week,” Susan said. COMPILED BY//GRACE YOUNG

April 19, 2013 West Side Story  

Iowa City West High's April 2013 Newsmagazine

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