Ann Arbor resident Susan Blake stepped up to the podium at Tuesday's City Council meeting and made her presence known. "I'm a chicken," she said.
Blake began clucking like an agitated hen to demonstrate the potential noise level of backyard chickens in Ann Arbor. Her squawks bounced off the council chamber walls, reiterating her point as she finished her speech: "I'm against chickens for several reasons, but that's one of them," she said.
Despite some residents' fears of noise, smelly manure, unsightly coops and the avian flu, Ann Arbor City Council voted 7-4 Tuesday to amend an ordinance that previously banned backyard chickens. When the amendment becomes effective in 60 days, Ann Arbor residents will be able to keep up to four hens in coops in their backyards with their neighbors' consent. Chickens could be kept as pets or for eggs.