Thirteen-year-old Emma Giesbrecht appeared before Langley Township council last month to argue for a bylaw that would allow backyard chicken coops in urban areas.

Teen brings campaign for backyard coops to council

Neighbour argues against call to permit raising of chickens in urban areas of Langley

A Brookswood teen brought her campaign to allow Vancouver-style urban chicken coops in Langley Township backyards to council last month.

“I’m here about the chickens,” 13-year-old Emma Giesbrecht told a Township staffer when she arrived before the start of the afternoon council meeting.

Giesbrecht came prepared with a written speech, computer slideshow and freshly-printed full-colour pamphlet.

She has also set up a Facebook page, “Chickens for Langley, B.C.” which calls for allowing backyard chicken coops in residential areas like the cities of Vancouver, Seattle and New York.

Giesbrecht delivered her pitch at a brisk pace, arguing that allowing a maximum of six chickens per residential backyard was “totally reasonable.”

Giesbrecht and the Otter Flying Feathers 4-H Club want a permit-based process that would allow 4-H members who don’t live on farms to raise chickens and rabbits at their homes.

Council made no decision on the suggestion, but Giesbrecht won praise for what Mayor Jack Froese called “probably the best presentation we’ve had [in some time].”

The proposal was opposed by Susanne and Scott Robb, who live near the Giesbrecht family.

Susanne Robb said they were forced to file a complaint with Township bylaw enforcement officers after the number of chickens in the Giesbrecht’s backyard attracted rats.

She said their neighbours started with four chickens, but the number grew to as many as 22.

“If you want to raise chickens … you should live on an acreage or a hobby farm,” Robb said.

The City of Vancouver approved urban chicken coops in residential backyards in 2010.

The bylaw limits the number of birds in a backyard to four hens, no roosters, four months or older.

About 100 Vancouver households have obtained permits to raise chickens.

Just Posted

Kodiaks begin best-of-seven series strong

The Kodiaks opened their quarter-final playoff series by defeating the Delta Ice Hawks on home ice.

Abbotsford goes up 2-0 on Langley

Pilots win both games on home ice, series now shifts to Langley

Heritage proposal for Aldergrove fire hall at a ‘standstill’

The Alder Grove Heritage Society faces a delay in knowing the fate of the fire hall due to tenants slated to live in the building until 2020.

VIDEO: Langley hosting high-flying fun at annual gymnastics tournament

Action runs Friday through Sunday at the Langley Events Centre fieldhouse.

BREAKING: Plecas won’t run in next election if legislature oversight reforms pass

B.C. Speaker and Abbotsford South MLA says he feels ‘great sympathy’ for Jody Wilson-Raybould

VIDEO: Langley hosting high-flying fun at annual gymnastics tournament

Action runs Friday through Sunday at the Langley Events Centre fieldhouse.

Ammonia leak shuts down curling club in Nelson

It’s not yet clear when the leak was detected

Pavelski’s 31st goal helps Sharks top Canucks 3-2

Vancouver one point out of second NHL wild-card spot

Stabbing at Lower Mainland banquet hall sends man to hospital

RCMP says victim has ‘non-life threatening’ injuries, incident still under investigation

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

B.C. couple attacked with acid, slashed with knife in Vietnam

Warning, graphic images: Man has burns on 80 per cent of his body, slashed with knife

Northern B.C. First Nation clan says ancient tools found at pipeline work site

Archeologists from the Smithsonian Institute estimate one of the stones found dates back up to 3500 years

Most Read