City to launch Hens and Bees pilot program
The City will launch a two-year Hens and Bees pilot program this year, offering up to 10 local households a chance to keep hens or bees in their backyard. Applications will be accepted from Feb. 1–15; however interested residents are encouraged to review program guidelines and eligibility requirements in advance.
Due to the current situation with COVID-19, extra safety measures will be in place to help keep residents safe. Required training, for example, will be offered online.
The Hens and Bees program will enhance homeowners’ personal food production options in a safe and respectful manner, and is seen as an extension to backyard fruit and vegetable gardening. It can also be rewarding experience for residents and strengthen the community’s connection to nature. This includes those who are participating as well as those who live close by.
The City will follow up with neighbours to confirm they are accepting of the program before approving a resident application. Efforts will be made to first address concerns, however neighbour acceptance is required to participate.
Over the next two years, the program will be evaluated for longer-term implementation and future growth. Areas that will be considered include community interest, frequency of inquiries, barriers and limiting factors to participation, and feedback provided from program participants and neighbours.
Many urban communities have successfully implemented similar programs, including those in the Capital Region (i.e., the City of Edmonton).
Karen Yake, Communications Officer
City of Leduc