Chickens at the Historic Village in Downtown Clermont

Raising chickens in urban areas across the United States is gaining in popularity.  Chickens have been known to make good pets and provide companionship; and unlike a dog or cat, can deliver fresh eggs to the household.

As more urbanites want chickens in their backyards, many cities and municipalities have been asked to reconsider their ordinances on backyard livestock.

At a recent Clermont Council Meeting, City Manager Darren Gray asked council members if they wanted to consider open dialogue on permitting chickens within the city limits. Staff, he said, had reviewed similar municipalities and has formed five review points for accepting backyard chickens into the city’s livestock land development regulations.

Five Review Points:

Any person keeping chickens for personal use shall be subject to the following restrictions:

(1) Permit Required. A Backyard Chicken permit is required for the keeping of chickens. The permit is personal to the permittee and may not be reassigned.

(2) Up to five (5) chickens may be kept at one location upon receiving a permit from the City.

(3) Roosters are not permitted.

(4) All chickens must be housed under sanitary conditions in an escape-proof enclosure located no less than 40 feet from the nearest neighboring dwelling, church or other occupied building.

(5) Chicken coops must be located in the rear yard. No coop will be allowed in any front or side yard

Dr. Robert Olson, a Clermont resident and advocate spoke about the health and nutritional value of keeping chickens.

Council will hold a hearing later this year to discuss the possibility of embracing chickens in the Clermont community.

Attend Chicken University to learn more backyard chicken keeping.

The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension in Lake County is hosting:

Chicken University
July 26 from 6 – 8 p.m.

Lake County Extension Center
1951 Woodlea Road, Tavares

Back by popular demand, this two-hour class introduces the prospective small flock poultry producer or backyard chicken keeper to the basics of chicken biology, nutrition, and husbandry. Topics to be covered include getting started, feeds and feeding, trouble-shooting egg production, and how to legally sell your eggs. Registration, which includes a printed booklet, is $10 and is available online at

Another class offered in July:

Flowering Trees and Shrubs for Central Florida
July 21 from 10 – 11:30 a.m.

Lake County Extension Center,
1951 Woodlea Road, Tavares

Master Gardener Crandall May will present on Florida-friendly flowering trees and shrubs suited for central Florida. Covered topics also include crape myrtle care and pruning. The program is part of the “Saturday in the Gardens” series, which explores popular home lawn and garden themes. Registration is $5 per participant and is available online at

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