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New Hampshire Legislature Considering Laws to Confine Free-Roaming Poultry


Based on nuisance complaints, the legislature of New Hampshire is considering a law requiring owners of poultry to confine their flocks. The problem of free-roaming poultry creating a nuisance has increased in recent years throughout the U.S. following the growing popularity of “backyard hens” although in suburban and rural areas, difficulties are encountered with domestic waterfowl.

The proposed confinement law has more serious implications in states with a high density of commercial poultry. Turkey growers in North Carolina frequently complain to the Department of Agriculture about errant fowl. As a component of Structural Biosecurity, the area within the ‘line of demarcation’ surrounding poultry houses should be fenced to exclude free-roaming chickens which serve as reservoirs of parasites and pathogens.

(SMS 254-18 February 8th 2018)