, Derry, New Hampshire


December 19, 2013

Derry continues to ponder its livestock rules

Officials work on potential livestock ordinance updates


Some updates may includes putting restrictions on what animals can be kept on certain size properties. Some officials want to make it illegal to keep roosters on any lot under 3 acres and to somehow keep the birds quiet between the hours of 8 p.m. and 6:30 a.m.

Other towns require specific property sizes for certain animals. Londonderry requires 2 acres for livestock.

Bishop said it’s just a good idea to put more specifics into Derry’s rules to help her patrol problem areas better.

“This gives me something to go say, ‘You can’t do this,’” she said. “Nine times out of 10, most people are compliant.”

Derry already has rules on the books to handle dog situations, Bishop said. The updated rules would cover fowl and livestock issues.

Planning Board vice chairman John O’Connor said he did not want any restrictions put on roosters.

Other areas are already in line with the state rules, he said.

“Some of these changes are extremely restrictive,” he said. “It still seems like we have a lot of work to do.”

Planning Board member Randy Chase agreed that the 3-acre restriction was too harsh.

“A rooster could walk up to a neighbor’s bedroom window and crow while living on 10 acres,” he said.

Planning Director George Sioras said it’s more of a nuisance issue than what the size of the property is.

“We already have postage stamp-sized lots downtown that have animals,” he said.

Any changes made to Derry’s animal law would go to town counsel for review, Sioras said.

“That balances it out to make sure we’re in line with the state statutes,” he said.

More workshops will be held to deal with the livestock ordinance issue.

Bishop said she is happy with what she is hearing.

“I think it’s a good idea,” she said. “I think in all fairness to animals and animal owners, this is not going to restrict people too much.”

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