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Kate Bennett: Trolls Ate My Chicken!

Chickens good. Unga Unga. -From the Primordial Forest

Oh, where to begin. I suppose with Lord save me from all conspiracy theorists of the inflated-head variety. 

In a "journalistic" to my chicken-related blog, I was accused of master-minding a vast chicken-wing conspiracy. This accusation was based on comments on my husband's Facebook page (creepy) and my own desire to have Geneva allow backyard chickens. All I really have to say is this: There is no chicken-wing conspiracy. 

Unfortunately, the accusation of the conspiracy completely overtook the comments section of the article in question. No worries, chicken fans and foes. I have facts, and unlike opinions (among other things), only people who read and research have those. 

Firstly, chickens are not loud. Hens produce sounds at about 63 decibels. (Ahem, fact!) That's about the noise of two people talking. (Facts are fun!) Oh, and here's the wiki on that. Other sources list hens between 60 and 70 decibels. For the sake of comparison, since we don't all think in decibels, here is a helpful list (of facts!)

Here is a list of common noises and their decibel levels:

  • Aircraft at take-off (180)
  • Fireworks (140)
  • Snowmobile (120)
  • Chain saw (110)
  • Amplified music (110)
  • Lawn mower (90)
  • Noisy office (90)
  • Vacuum cleaner (80)
  • City traffic (80)
  • Normal conversation (60)
  • Refrigerator humming (40)
  • Whisper (20)
  • Leaves rustling (10)
  • Calm breathing (10)

Source (Oh em gee, a source!! A source of facts!)

But dear God, the filth! Oh those filthy, filthy chickens. Chickens are so filthy that it takes six of them to produce the same amount of excrement as a dog. Or a really bad attempt at journalism with a side of cyber-creeping, topped with utterly lunatic conclusions. Ok, it might take more than 6 chickens to come up with that. 

"So while the rest of us are screaming at the city to keep costs down, now code enforcers are supposed to deal with rogue chicken coops? Yes! The city could always implement some sort of chicken husbandry charge, but considering that Batavia’s had all of seven applications, it would have to be one heck of a fee to make it worth their while."

I really love this one. So is it that seven is too many to enforce, or that seven is not enough to make an annual fee cover the cost? And what cost, exactly, are we talking about here? Unless the city is considering inspecting every dog-owner's yard for poop, I don't see why they would need to inspect each and every chicken coop for same. 

"When we stepped out of that primordial forest to band together in settlements, we chose to give up certain facets of our solitary life in exchange for the benefits of a shared existence. And if I recall correctly, one of those things was chickens."

You, dear "journalist," recall incorrectly. People in settlements had, and still have, chickens. I am not even going to provide a helpful link to back up that fact (there is that pesky word again) or quote any sort of statistic. Because duh, that's why. 

So bottom line, you can attack me, attack bloggers, and accuse me of crazy unbelievable conspiracies to promote my chicken-loving agenda, but it doesn't change the facts (!) of the case. 

Chickens are not a problem in an urban setting. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Kat Hoffman August 31, 2012 at 04:01 PM
Dear Tom..... WOW! Here in URBAN Batavia we allow chickens. There havent been issues, we have rules like only hens, placement of cage on property and how many. If someone wants to be able to PROVIDE their family with fresh eggs daily they should be able to. Signed a PRO CHICKEN supporter
Tom Brown August 31, 2012 at 04:25 PM
OK, one more time. I've responded to Robert's post about 3 times now and it doesn't seem to get published. Am I doing something wrong? Have the pro-chicken people come to the conclusion they're not getting anywhere with me? Thanks
Tom Brown August 31, 2012 at 04:40 PM
Wow, that one posted. OK! Robert: I did not conclude that you have no grip on reality. Look again at that post. It was addressed to Sarah. I concluded that Sarah had conjured a "closed coop" in her mind that did not allow odors or sounds or sight of chickens by any neighbors. Robert, you have "fond members" of Urbana chickens roaming free...not that there's anything wrong with that. Now I'm confused. Are we letting the chickens roam free? Are we keeping them confined to closed, soundproof, sight proof and ordorless cages? Seems cruel to the chickens. Are we allowing roosters or not? How far from property lines? How far from the house? Minimum lot size? Has Geneva grown an "upscale college" while I wasn't looking? Again, ask any realtor what he/she thinks about permitting chickens in an urban setting like this before complaining about falling property values.
Kat Hoffman August 31, 2012 at 08:26 PM
I'd take several chickens over a closed minded always needs to be right neighbor anyday!
Tom Brown September 01, 2012 at 04:33 AM
Kat: I don't always need to be right, just online and just about chickens. You didn't really expect to change anyone's mind about this, did you? Believe me, I'm not the only one in this town who would rather not have chickens being bred next door. ...Again, ask any good realtor.

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