Are Backyard Chickens Legal in Texas?

Raising backyard chickens in Texas is a popular activity, especially after the Covid-19 pandemic that taught us the importance of being self-sufficient. 

Chickens require little maintenance, and they are a great source of food and entertainment when stuck at home. 

However, there are several restrictions on keeping backyard chickens in Texas, and they change from city to city. In some areas, laws prohibit people from owning more than a certain number of chickens, and in some areas, you cannot raise backyard chickens. Below is some helpful information about raising chicken in your backyard in Texas.

Backyard chickens in Texas 

Raising backyard chickens in Texas is a great way to bring up a self-sufficient and interconnected community. 

You can collect at least half a dozen eggs daily with six chickens. 

As a result, families will have more eggs than they need resulting in sharing with neighbors. Chickens are a great way to bring people together as enthusiasts take notice flock together to talk about chicken.

Chicken also helps keep pests in check and naturally takes care of the earth. By having the birds around your yard, you can till and garden a small portion of your land effortlessly. 

The chicken will also reduce wastage by eating leftovers. Chicken poop is also an excellent and effective natural fertilizer.

Backyard chicken keeping is also better and more sustainable than factory farming. 

The reason is that it reduces the risk of spread of disease and bacteria that are antibiotic-resistant. 

On another note, factory farming is one of the most significant contributors to water pollution, and backyard chicken farming can help manage waste outputs.

Laws about chickens in city limits in Texas

Most cities have rules concerning keeping chickens. The most common regulations are the prohibition of keeping chickens, and if chickens are kept, then there may be restrictions on the number of chickens per household at any one time. In other cases, you may be required to get a permit.

Arlington, TX. You will need land that’s more than half an acre to raise your hens. You are not allowed to keep roosters. Even with such land, you can only keep a maximum of four hens. You will also need to keep the chickens 50 ft. away from neighborhood houses and enclose them in a coop.

Austin, TX. A household can keep ten chickens penned 50ft. away from the houses. Other sources say that currently, there are no laws limiting the number of chickens you can keep in this city. Also, there are debates about the ban on raising roosters.

Baytown, TX. You can raise backyard chicken penned 100 ft. away from neighbors. Most households are not large enough for this requirement.

Dallas, TX. There are no laws addressing the issue of keeping backyard chickens in the city.

Fort Worth, TX. You can keep up to 12 chickens in the city as long as the resident is zoned out. You have to keep them in a chicken coop that is 50 ft. away from other houses. This not only includes the neighbor’s houses but yours as well.

Garland, TX. The limit is two hens per household.

Grand Prairie, TX. Requires you to keep chicken 150 feet away from people’s houses and neighboring structures, which is almost impossible in a city or suburb.

Houston, TX. You must keep your chicken penned in 63 feet*125 feet coop measurement. The limit is 30 chickens, geese, ducks, rabbits, peafowl, and guinea pig.

Irving, TX. The Park & Rec department notes that because they recognize the changing demographics, they are not enforcing any restrictions regarding livestock keeping.

Laredo, TX. If you raise six or fewer chickens, there are no restriction set-backs. However, if you raise more than six chickens, pen them at least 100ft from the occupied building, including your own.

Lewisville, TX. You may keep five individual chickens per every-fourth acre of land within your premises penned in locations 150 feet away from residents, offices, schools, businesses, churches, and other structures according to laws on separate ownership for human inhabitation use. The coop should offer 100 square feet of run area for birds kept on the premises. To reduce potential noise disturbance to nearby premises, roosters that can crow should not be within 1500 feet of any residential dwelling.

Longview, TX. As long as the structure has secure tops, bottoms, and sides and offers shelter from the rain, you may keep an unlimited number of chickens. The area should be 100 feet away from any neighboring residents.

Mansfield, TX. You require 20,000 square feet of land to keep chicken.

Murphy, TX. Regulation limits raising chicken to two hens

Plano, TX. There are no prohibitions from keeping chicken

Richardson, TX. You can keep chicken as long as you can control the noise and smell.

Round Rock, TX. You are limited to 5 chickens. The coop must be at least 25 ft. away from neighbors. If you can build the chicken structure at least 50 ft. away, you can raise ten hens.

San Antonia, TX. You can have five chickens per household. However, the pen should be 20 feet away from other structures. In 2010 the laws were amended to 3 chickens as long as they are enclosed. If you wish to have more than chicken, you will need a permit.

Sachse, TX. The law limits you to 15 small livestock.

St. Paul, TX. The city does not cover the topic of raising backyard chickens.

Victoria, TX. No person can keep, raise, feed or maintain chicken within the city unless they meet the following conditions. The chicken should be enclosed a minimum of 100 feet away from residents exclusive of the owner’s building. The coop must be kept clean to avoid offensive smells and health hazards. The maximum number of chickens is 25 chickens per household.

Waco, TX. As long as the pen is 200 feet away from neighboring homes, you are allowed to keep your chicken.

Wylie, TX. Raising chicken is prohibited.

Can HOA ban chickens in Texas?

When raising backyard chicken in suburban and urban areas, there are several considerations to pay attention to when raising backyard chicken. 

One of the most important but most overlooked factors is the rules set by HOA regarding raising chicken at home. Many issues can come if you don’t know your HOA rights regarding raising chicken. 

Even with no regulations from municipal authorities concerning backyard chicken, the Home Owners Association (HOA) may have restrictions. You will need to look at the HOA rules before keeping chicken.

Conclusion

In raising backyard chickens in Texas, you need flexible expectations. You may want to have a flock of hens, but if your city or HOA determines your limit are two, you will need to adhere.

For cities that allow you to keep backyard chicken, enjoy fresh eggs.

You might also like

About James

I grew up on a small farm. My parents used to grow food and keep animals for our sustenance. They would sell the surplus to make an extra coin to supplement the income from their jobs. I am taking the same path. I have over 40 chickens for eggs and meat. I also grow vegetables in my backyard. follow me on Twitter

View all posts by James