Wednesday, May 27, 2015

All The Clucking and Buzzing in Broomfield

More and more people are getting interested in their own chicken and beekeeping, and municipalities are keeping up with the trend. If you live in Broomfield, following are the city's rules for your backyard coops and hives.

Chickens are allowed. A license is $25 and subjected to the following restrictions:
(1) No more than five chickens are permitted per residential lot;
(2) Roosters are prohibited;
(3) Chickens must be contained within a coop and enclosure;
(4) Chickens may not be kept within a front yard;
(5) Coops and enclosures must be set back a minimum of 10 feet from the property line;
(6) Outside slaughtering is prohibited:
(7) Coops and enclosures less than six feet in height or coops 32 square feet or less shall not
require a building permit. Coops and enclosures six feet or greater in height or coops greater than 32 square feet shall require a building permit through the Building Division of the Department of Community Development.

Beekeeping is allowed. A license is $25 and subjected to the following restrictions:

(1) Maximum number of hives per lot:
     (a) One-quarter acre or less: two hives;
     (b) More than one-quarter acre up to and including one-half acre: four hives;
     (e) More than one-half acre but less than one acre: six hives;
     (d) One acre or larger: eight hives;
     (e) Regardless of lot size, where all hives are situated at least 200 feet from all property lines of the lot on which the hives are located, there shall be no limit to the number of hives;
     (f) For each two hives authorized above, there may be maintained upon the same lot one nucleus colony in a hive structure as required from time to time for management of swarms, said hive structure to comply with the other requirements of this section;
(2) Location: Hives shall be set back a minimum of 10 feet from all property lines and shall not be located in a front yard.
(3) Flyway barrier: If a hive is within 25 feet of a property line a flyway barrier at least six feet tall extending at least two feet beyond the hive shall be maintained between the hive and property line. A privacy fence a minimum of six feet in height, on or inside the property line, meets this requirement.
(4) Water: A supply of fresh water shall be maintained on the lot in a location readily accessible to all bee colonies to keep bees from congregating at water sources on nearby properties.
(5) Africanized bees: Africanized bees are prohibited.
(6) Queens: If a colony becomes aggressive or swarms, the beekeeper shall re-queen the colony with a queen selected from stock bred for gentleness and nonswarming characteristics.
(7) Nuisance: Any swarm or colony of bees not residing in a maintained hive structure is declared a nuisance. Any bee colonies not in compliance with this chapter or declared a nuisance may be destroyed or removed at the direction of the City and County Manager or his designee.

Chickens and bees are also allowed in Boulder, Louisville and Lafayette; please contact the cities directly for their set of guidelines. Homeowners Associations may have rules that further restrict or ban the above practices. Be sure to research your neighborhood for specifics before building your backyard coop or hive.

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