Illinois Cities and Towns That Allow Backyard Chickens


What cities in Illinois allow the keeping of backyard chickens and how many chickens are allowed per residence in these cities? In January 2023, the average price for a dozen eggs reached $4.25 in the state of Illinois. As a result, several Illinoisans, hoping to save money, have started skipping the middleman to get eggs directly from the source.

However, not all cities in The Prairie State allow their residents to raise chickens in their backyards. And in most Illinois cities where keeping backyard chickens is permitted, there are regulations on the number of chickens a resident can keep. Furthermore, even if your city or town permits backyard chickens, Landlords or Homeowner Associations may tell you NO. With that in mind, read on to discover some Illinois cities in which you are allowed to raise backyard chickens.

Backyard Chickens in Illinois

Cook County, IL

In Cook County, IL, the city of Chicago allows the keeping of backyard chickens for personal use in residential districts. Currently, Chicago does not have rules that limit the number of chickens a resident can keep. However, most Chicago suburbs don't permit roosters. Furthermore, there are ordinances in place in Chicago regarding nuisance, sanitation, and slaughtering of chickens.

The city of Evanston permits its residents to keep up to six hens in a backyard coop. However, Evanston residents need to obtain a $50 Hen Coop License. The village of Palatine allows its residents to have a maximum of six chickens, excluding roosters under certain requirements, including a coop located in the backyard, a fenced chicken run, and a solid 6-foot fence around the backyard.

In the city of Des Plaines, residents are allowed to keep 4 hens in backyard coops. According to Fox32, A proposal in Des Plaines currently seeks to allow roosters and increase the maximum number of chickens per residence from four to six.

You can have backyard chickens in the city of Berwyn, IL. Other cities, towns, and villages in Cook County, IL, that allow backyard chickens include:
  • Oak Park
  • Wheeling
  • Northbrook
  • Niles
  • Lansing

DuPage County, IL

In DuPage County, IL, the village of Downers Grove allows the keeping of four backyard hens but neighbors have to approve it first. In the village of Lombard, residents need to obtain a permit to keep backyard chickens in single-family homes. Lombard permits up to 6 hens per single-family home.

The village of Westmont allows no more than six hens per residence. In the city of Darien, residents can keep a maximum of six backyard chickens, excluding roosters, with a $25 permit and under certain rules.

The village of Villa Park requires residents to obtain a $50 license in order to to keep a maximum of six hens in single-family residential areas. But only 50 residential zoning lots are permitted to have backyard hens at one time in Villa Park Village.

Lake County, IL

Keeping backyard chicken is allowed in Lake County, Illinois. However, the number of chickens you can keep depends on the size of the properties and where you live. For starters, roosters are not allowed in Lake County and chicken coops must be located at least thirty feet away from any nearby building.

Lake County allows a maximum of 4 hens on any property, regardless of size. The County allows 6 hens on 10,000 square feet lots, 8 hens on 20,000 square feet lots, 10 hens on 40,000 square feet lots, 12 hens on 80,000 square feet lots, and unlimited hens on 200,000 square feet lots. Furthermore, hens are allowed to roam free within a fenced back yard, but not outside of the fenced yard in Lake County, Illinois.

Though Lake County permits backyard chickens, many towns and villages have their own ordinances regarding the keeping of chickens. So if you are considering having backyard chickens in Lake County, I suggest you contact your town clerk or check your city or village animal ordinances.

Will County, IL

It is legal to have backyard chickens in Will County, IL, but all municipalities may not allow it. The village of Homer Glen allows backyard chickens in residential areas if certain requirements are met. To begin with, Homer Glen Village does not allow roosters. A maximum of four hens are permitted per lot. Chicken coops must be located at least fifty feet away from all property lines. In addition, the sale of eggs and the outdoor slaughter of chickens are prohibited in the village of Homer Glen.

Chickens are allowed in the City of Crest Hill, Will County, IL. 

Kane County, IL

Kane County allows the keeping of backyard chickens for personal use on properties of one acre or more. Roosters are permitted on properties of less than five acres in Kane County. Furthermore, chicken enclosures must hundred feet away from any nearby residence. Municipalities that allow backyard chickens in Kane County include but are not limited to:
  • Campton Hills
  • Batavia
  • South Elgin
  • Sugar Grove
  • Pingree Grove
  • West Dundee
  • Gilberts
  • Hampshire

McHenry County, IL

McHenry County, Illinois allows its residents to have up to six backyard chickens. Roosters, however, are not permitted in McHenry County. In addition, keeping backyard chickens in McHenry County must be for personal use and chicken coops must be located at least ten feet away from any lot line and other structures.


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