Backyard Chicken Keeping Program

On July 25, 2019, City Council approved Ordinance Number 2019-35 which establishes the opportunity for City of St. Cloud residents whom occupy detached single family homes and duplexes to be able to keep up to 4 chickens in their backyards. In order to participate in this program, residents must obtain a Backyard Chicken Keeping Permit through the Planning and Zoning Department. Please contact the Planning and Zoning Department at 407-957-8427 or planning@stcloud.org for a copy of the application documents and Ordinance 2019-35.

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Please Note: If you wish to obtain a "Backyard Chicken-Keeping" Permit, you will need to participate in a "Chicken Keeping" class. The Osceola County UF/IFAS Extension Services offers the "Backyard Poultry Basics" class. For the convenience of St. Cloud's residents, the class will be scheduled on a quarterly basis, right here in St. Cloud!

Currently, the dates for the next available classes are:

October 3rd at 6 pm in Room 3 

November 9th at 10 am in Room 2

Classes will be held at the St. Cloud Civic Center located at 3001 17th St, St Cloud, FL 34769. Registration for the class is $5.00. Please contact the Osceola County UF/IFAS Extension Services Office at 321-697-3000 or the Planning and Zoning Department 407-957-8427 or planning@stcloud.org for registration and more information.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many chickens will I be allowed to have?

Each permit issued will allow up to 4 chickens. No roosters will be allowed.

If your community has an HOA, you must get their approval first. 1 permit will be issued per parcel ID.

How much is the Backyard Chicken Keeping permit?  

The Permit fee is $25.00 and is good for one year.  
Renewals are $10.00.

What is the Backyard Chicken Keeping permit good for?

The Backyard Chicken permit will allow the Planning & Zoning Department to review the coop and run design and placement to ensure it meets the Ordinance’s requirements. An approved Backyard Chicken Keeping permit will give the applicant permission to keep up to 4 chickens in their backyard.

What type of property can have a Backyard Chicken Keeping permit?

Up to 4 chickens may be kept on an occupied detached single-family or duplex residence. Chickens shall NOT be kept on properties development with commercial uses, mobile home/manufactured home parks, triplexes, townhomes and apartments or other multifamily properties.

Will I need a separate building permit from the Building Department?

A separate permit may be required as follows:

COOP & RUN CONSTRUCTION – you will NOT need a separate building permit.

PRE-FABRICATED COOP & RUN – you will NOT need a separate building permit.

FENCE FOR RUN AREA ONLY – you will NOT need a separate building permit.

FENCE FOR SCREENING – you WILL be required to obtain a separate building permit from the Building Department for a fence.

Please contact the Building Department at 407-957-7224 if you have any questions regarding building permits.

How much room do I need for my chickens?

You will need at least 3 square feet per chicken in the coop.  Please read Ordinance #2019-35 since it indicates specific requirements about the coop and run placement, size, covering, fences, etc. In order to apply for a permit you must sign an Affidavit indicating that you have read and understand Ordinance #2019-35 and its requirements. You may contact the Planning and Zoning Department at 407-957-8427 if you have any questions.

According to Ordinance #2019-35, a “fenced pen enclosure/run is required”.  If I have a fully fenced backyard, will that be sufficient?

No. Your backyard does not qualify as the pen/run area. A separate fenced area (usually connected to the coop) is required for your chickens. The maximum size of the coop and pen shall be 120 square feet.

Ordinance #2019-35 states “chicken coops and pens shall be completely screened from adjacent roadways and neighboring parcels by a six-foot tall opaque fence or wall erected on the property line”.  What does this mean?

An opaque fence is one that is impenetrable by light; neither transparent nor translucent.  Wooden or vinyl slat fences are good examples of opaque fences if there are no spaces between slats. Pickett fences, chain link fences or chain link fences with slats are not opaque fences. The purpose of the opaque fence is to “screen” the chicken coop from your neighbors. Since your backyard does not qualify as the pen/run area, you will need to provide your chickens a separate fenced area (usually connected to the coop). If you have an opaque fence in your rear yard, your pen/run area does not need an opaque fence since you are already providing “screening” with your opaque fence.  This means your run area can be constructed of chicken wire, chain link or similar non-opaque material. However, if you do not have an opaque fence in your rear yard, your fenced run area will need to have an opaque fence.

Where can I get information about the Backyard Poultry Basics class?

The City will schedule classes that will be provided to City residents in conjunction with the Osceola County UF/IFAS Extension Office. Dates and times will be posted on the City’s Calendar and on this page.

I obtained a Backyard Chicken Keeping permit and have chickens but now I’m moving.  What do I do?

If you wish to relocate your chickens to your new house, you will need to notify the City in writing.  You must indicate your permit #, your new address and include a new coop sketch based on the new property.  An Affidavit will be required from the property owner if other than yourself.  If your community has a Homeowner’s Association, you must get their approval.

I obtained a Backyard Chicken Keeping permit and had chickens for a while but I decided I don’t want them anymore.   What do I do?

You will need to notify the City in writing of your desire to discontinue backyard chicken keeping. A final inspection will be completed within 30 days to ensure that the chickens, coop and pen have been removed from the property.

Can I sell the eggs my chicken lay?

Chickens shall be kept for personal use only. Selling chickens, eggs, or chicken manure, or the breeding of chickens for commercial purposes is prohibited.

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More Information

For information, please contact the Planning and Zoning Department at 407-957-8427 or email the Planning Department.