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Chickens in your Backyard

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Why have Chickens?

Not only are chickens great pets but there are plenty of benefits to keeping chooks in your backyard:

  • Access to the freshest, tastiest, and most nutritious eggs around
  • Chickens can help reduce pests like grubs and ticks
  • Recycle your food scraps
  • Support ethical food production by having happy, healthy chooks
  • Chickens waste offers a nearly unlimited supply of nutrients for your compost and garden.

It’s important to note local councils have different regulations about keeping chickens in your backyard.

How many chickens can I keep in my backyard?

Under State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008,  there is a limit of no more than 10 chickens as long as they are maintained in accordance with the guidelines of that policy.


  • Maximum floor area 15m2
  • Maximum height of 3m above ground level (existing)
  • Be located in the rear yard
  • No more than 10 fowls or poultry per house
  • Must be structurally adequate
  • Limit of one per property
  • Requires a distance from the boundary of 3 metres.
  • Must be located at least 4.5m from any dwelling, public hall, school or premises used for the manufacture, preparation, sale or storage of food
  • Materials used must blend with the environment and be non reflective
  • Adequate drainage must be provided
  • Floor must be concrete or mineral asphalt underneath roosts or perches.


  • Consideration should be given to the impact upon adjoining properties
  • Water from the pen must not be allowed to enter a neighbouring property
  • Council does not recommend or encourage the keeping of roosters in residential areas.

Policy and Legislation

State Environment Planning Policy - page 46  - SEPP 2008 pg 46
Local Government (General) Regulation 2005 Scroll down to Part 5 Division 2

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