Davenport appears poised to join in urban chicken trend

DAVENPORT -- Citing the success of similar ordinances in nearby cities - including Moline and Rock Island - Davenport leaders appear to be warming to the idea of allowing backyard chicken raising in the city's neighborhoods.

Aldermen discussed an ordinance that would allow residents to keep up to six chickens on residential properties, as long as they spent $25 for a permit and take a chicken handling training course. The topic was on Wednesday night's Committee-of-the-Whole agenda, and appeared to have broad support.

3rd Ward Ald. Bill Boom said he and other elected officials have been watching other communities that have already allowed backyard chickens, and haven't seen many negative issues at all.

"We saw that there were not a lot of complaints in these other cities, so I think it will probably go off smoothly if everyone follows the rules," he said.

More than 800 people have signed a petition in support of backyard chickens in Davenport. The proposed ordinance will now move on to the City Council's regular meeting for a vote.