Maryland Chicken Laws

In Maryland, the rules about backyard chickens are decided on a city-by-city or county-by-county basis. Still, some rules generally apply across the state:

  • Zoning: Backyard chickens are generally allowed in Maryland, but local zoning regulations may apply. It is important to check with your local government to determine if there are any restrictions.
  • Number of Chickens: The maximum number of chickens allowed per property varies by county. For example, Montgomery County allows up to eight hens, but no roosters, while Baltimore County allows up to four hens and one rooster per household.
  • Roosters: Some counties in Maryland prohibit roosters, while others allow them with restrictions, such as limiting the number per property or requiring permits.
  • Coops and Runs: Coops and runs must be predator-proof, well-ventilated, and clean to prevent disease and pest infestations. They should also provide adequate space for the number of chickens you keep.
  • Slaughtering: Slaughtering chickens is allowed on your own property, but there may be regulations regarding the disposal of waste and methods used. It is important to check with your local government before slaughtering chickens.
  • Health: Chickens must be kept in good health and free of disease. Regular veterinary check-ups are recommended.
  • Waste: Chicken waste must be properly disposed of, and composting is recommended.
  • Permitting: Some counties require permits to keep backyard chickens, while others do not. Check with your local government to determine if a permit is necessary.

Remember that laws and regulations can vary by county, so it is important to check with your local government before keeping backyard chickens in Maryland.

View Maryland Chicken Ordinances by City

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