Where in Pennsylvania Can You Have Backyard Chickens?

If you are considering keeping chickens in your backyard in Pennsylvania State, you need to first make sure it is allowed in your county or city. If keeping chickens is permitted in your municipality, you also need to check your local animal ordinance to ensure you are in compliance with the number of chickens allowed per property and caging rules. In this article, which might be able to point you in the right direction, you will find some Pennsylvania townships and cities wherein keeping chickens is allowed.

Backyard Chickens being fed

Philadelphia County, PA

Currently, it is illegal to keep backyard chickens in the City of Philadelphia. Nevertheless, backyard chickens are surging in Philadelphia despite the city law prohibiting them. In 2022, Philadelphia introduced a proposed bill that would legalize the keeping of up to six backyard chickens per household within the city limits. According to Philly Mag, the keeping of backyard chickens may soon be allowed in the City of Philadelphia.

Allegheny County, PA

In Allegheny County, PA, the city of Pittsburgh allows the keeping of backyard chickens in areas zoned for agriculture. Penn Hills residents must have Zoning Hearing Board approval before keeping a maximum of 4 backyard hens on their property.

The Village of Bethel Park allows up to 15 chickens with a $10 permit in the R-1, R-2 and R-3 Zoning DistrictsReserve Township residents are allowed to keep a maximum of 6 to 12 chickens, excluding roosters, depending on property size.

Other cities and townships that allow backyard chickens in Allegheny County, PA, include but are not limited to:
  • Ross Township
  • Monroeville
  • McCandless
  • Plum
  • Baldwin
  • Hampton Township

Bucks County, PA

A few Townships in Bucks County, PA, allow backyard chickens. Doylestown Township permits up to 5 chickens on properties of one acre. Doylestown Township requires that chicken coops be kept at least 50 feet away from property lines. The Township of Bensalem does not have a law against keeping backyard chickens. Langhorne Borough allows the keeping of backyard chickens under certain conditions which can be found in the Borough's zoning ordinance.

The Township of Warminster allows a maximum of four chickens, excluding roosters, on parcels less than one acre. Chickens are not allowed on rented parcels in Warminster Township. East Rockhill Township allows five chickens on one-acre properties and 10 chickens on 2 or more acres of properties. However, a permit is required to have backyard chickens in East Rockhill Township. Furthermore, East Rockhill does not allow roosters and chickens in the R-1 and S zoning districts.

Delaware County, PA

In Delaware County, PA, Media Borough allows a maximum of four chickens per property. Roosters are prohibited in Media BoroughLansdowne Borough requires that its residents obtain an annual permit to keep a maximum of four backyard hens. 

Lancaster County, PA

In Lancaster County, PA, the Borough of Ephrata requires that residents obtain special permission from the Health Officer before keeping any chickens. In Upper Leacock Township, residents are allowed to keep a maximum of five chickens. Manheim Township allows up to 12 chickens and requires that chicken coops be kept 50 feet away from property lines and 100 feet away from neighbors' homes.

Other Pennsylvania Cities and Townships That Allow Backyard Chickens

  • Township of Newberry
  • Penn Township
  • East Bradford Township: Up to 30 chickens allowed
  • Borough of West Reading
  • Washington Township, Lehigh County
  • Bethlehem
  • South Whitehall Township
  • North Huntingdon
  • City of Monessen
  • City of Latrobe
  • City of Nanticoke: 6 hens
  • Lower Paxton Township
  • Borough of Hummelstown
  • Borough of Carlisle
  • Jermyn Borough
  • Mayfield Borough
  • Hermitage
  • Cecil Township
  • Ferguson Township
  • Uwchlan Township
  • Carroll Valley
  • Haverford Township
  • South Fayette Township
  • Willistown Township
  • Duncannon
  • Township of Carroll


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