Thursday, January 07, 2010

Another Chicken in DC story

I could have sworn I read this before, but it is dated for today. Cute kids, chickens, and Tommy Wells. Well there is this little bit:
Ernst's neighbor and fellow chicken champion, Amanda Cundiff, last week presented Councilmember David Catania (chairman of the committee on health) with a petition signed by 130 people supporting measures to allow chickens in the city. "Eggs hatch in February, and it would be nice if people could raise chickens this year," she said.

So make that cute kids, chickens, Tommy Wells and David Catania.

(HT: Jimbo, who knows my facination for the chicken)


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Friday, October 23, 2009

...and your little dog too

Sometime back while walking down R Street I encountered a little white dog off a leash. I wonder if it is the same dog that has been menacing students as reported yesterday on the listservs.
This morning, around 8am, one of the staff at Scott Montgomery ES informed me that one of her students, while coming to school, was chased by a small long-haired white dog. I alerted 911. I was in class and apparently out of cell phone range in the school when MPD responded, so I didn't speak to the officer immediately. Around 9am, I was told by the officer in a scout car positioned at 5th and O St that she responded and drove around the block looking for the dog and then went back to her fixed post.
I spoke to other students this morning and was informed by several of them that this particular off leash dog is a constant repeated. Since there are many young students who might potentially feel threatened by such an experience.

Keep your puppies leashed.

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Friday, October 02, 2009

Tommy and the Chickens

I would feel a bit more hopeful about the possible legalization of backyard chickens if I could see something on Ward 6 Councilman Tommy Well's webpage. Wells is the reported council champion. What I'd like to know more but can't find any more info, so far, and that's kinda frustrating.

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Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Chickeen challenge

Someone is openly challenging the idea that chickens are illegal in the city. In the September Hill Rag is tale of two little girls, their chickens and the mean, mean city government who threatened to take the chickens away.
This spring, the Silvermans hatched a small flock of baby chicks for their daughters to raise at their home. The girls learned about heirloom breeds, how to keep the chicks safe and what to feed them. A neighbor offered her side yard for the pullets (adolescent chickens) to graze in during the day. All was going well until a few weeks ago when somehow the police were contacted, and in turn, an Animal Control officer arrived at the scene threatening to remove the birds. Cooler heads prevailed, and the pullets were left alone that day. But Animal Control told the Silvermans that keeping chickens was illegal in DC, which we now know is not the case. What to do?
Chicken Summer Camp
The Silvermans have decided to tackle the chicken controversy head on. They have sent their birds to summer camp outside town. They are working with Ward 6 Council member Tommy Wells’ office who has advocated on their behalf with the Chief of the Bureau for Community Hygiene.

Well I for one support the Silverman's efforts and hope that one day DC citizens can openly raise a few birds (few, not a factory) in their backyards. If you want to contact Councilman Wells about this his email is twells[at]


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Monday, August 10, 2009

More on the Bundy Parking thing

Well good news, it appears that the Safe Shores folks won't need the whole lot, read from the Friends of Bundy:
Dear Friends and Neighbors:

The District Department of Real Estate Services (formerly the Office of Property Management) has reviewed the parking requirements for the District’s Child Advocacy Center coordinated by Safe Shores at the Bundy School.*

With approximately 17 spaces available on the school lot, the site will require an additional 42 spaces in the back lot. This should leave approximately 8,800 square feet of space available for other use. [emphasis added]

As a reminder, the back lot is owned by the Federal government. The District cannot proceed with any plans (parking or otherwise) until after the land transfer is complete and funding is identified.

*The Safe Shores project is part of the District’s continuing effort to become a model jurisdiction by expanding the service capacity for children who are victims of physical and sexual abuse. Construction will be complete in November 2009. Subsequently, staff from the US Attorney’s Office, Office of the Attorney General, Metropolitan Police Department, Child and Family Services and the non-profit Safe Shores will move in and begin operations.

Robin-Eve Jasper, Director
DC Department of Real Estate Services
2000 14th Street, NW, Suite 800, Washington, DC 20009

Dear Friends,

This August 7, 2009 announcement from the DC Department of Real Estate Services (DRES), formerly the Office of Property Management (OPM), suggests that there will be ample space left on the vacant lot at Bundy for use as a dog park (see url above).

According to DC’s Dog Park Regulations (Section 733.1 under Dog Parks: Site Guidelines and Specification), “a dog park shall be no less than five thousand square feet (5,000 sq ft) in area where feasible.” Hence, the remaining space on the vacant lot at Bundy — not used by parking for future Bundy School tenants — would still meet the minimum requirements for establishing a dog park.

We will continue our efforts to reach out to neighbors and dog owners in Wards 2, 5 and 6 so that we will be able to demonstrate the impressive support we have for a dog park when DPR begins to process our formal application.

Thank you for your support. Hope to see you on Aug. 21 for Jazz on the Green at Bundy Park with the DC Choro Ensemble.

Payam Bakhaje

Friends of Bundy Park

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Thursday, July 09, 2009

Bundy Lot Meeting

By golly I hate meetings, but you wouldn't know that because I keep attending them.
These are my quick points to keep from rambling. The rambling will be in another post:

* Office of Property Management (OPM) won't be handling how the land will be used. It will be Park and Rec's problem.

*There is approximately 37,000 sq ft in the building.

*OPM will have a clearer assessment of the building's parking needs in 30 days.

*OPM Director stated that she was, "not trying to over park anything."

*The land transfer from the Federal to the District government is expected to go through sometime this fall.

*After several promises of other locations, the DC government settled on the Bundy School as a location for the multidisciplinary team response to child abuse in 2004.

*Prior to Home Rule in 1973, DC school land was owned by a mix of the municipal body and the federal government, so the assumption that the lot belonged to the DC government was a natural error.

*(not from the meeting) Up until recently the DC government had no clue as to what land it owned, best illustrated in the case of vacant residential properties.

*Si, from MVSQ neighborhood association stated that we welcome Safe Shores and (okay memory fuzzy) as a neighbor? hoping they will be a good neighbor? Regardless, we welcome Safe Shores, and her comment got a good round of applause from the pro-parking and pro-green space folks.

*Martin of the CCCA neighborhood association mentioned there are plans in the works for playgrounds/parks (didn't write this down) at Scott-Montgomery and NJ and O.**

*The proposal for a dog park was pushed forward by a group, not the ANC.

*When the land transfer occurs then Parks & Rec can evaluate the dog park application.

Now if there is anything factually wrong with my notes, please inform me with comments. No anonymous comments, those are deleted at whim.

**It will be interesting to see how the proposed people parks/ playgrounds get used. There was play equipment in the park near the other Northwest Co-Op here in the TC. However, no parent in their right mind would let their kids play on it because of the bad adult behavior in and around that equipment. That's changing, but still more adults, hang out in that area than kids.

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Tonight! The Big Bundy Meeting

The image shown is a suggestion posted by a Mr. E. Smith where there is parking close to the Bundy building and a greenspace on the P Street side. I like it.
The meeting regarding the proposed parking lot is tonight (July 9, 2009) at 7pm at the Scott Montgomery Elementary School (421 P Street NW).
I got the flier today regarding the meeting. I do have some criticism of it, but keep in mind I am pro-dog park. One it doesn't mention the dog park idea at all. It just mentions greenspace. I understand why this was probably done, but full disclosure may be the best thing in the long run. Last criticism is the mention of shootings near Bundy Park, considering all the other factors in that general vicinity, I fail to see how it links up with problem. Otherwise there are wonderful and very valid points, such as the 600sf of building space to 1 parking spot code, meaning only 25 spaces are needed and pointing out that the 400 block of P is deserted and needs eyes and feet.
Also contact Eleanor Holmes Norton about this and express you concern as this involves a federal land transfer.

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Thursday, July 02, 2009

Lost Logan Cat

I don't often post about lost pets and got this plea.
Hello. I, too, am anticipating the fourth here in our neighborhood: my cat is missing and the 4th is not a good time for a lost cat (cats are abused/hurt with firecrackers, loud noises make them run even further from their home location, etc.). Can everyone here on these blogs, Mari, please post info about my cat on other blogs and websites you know of, in addition to telling/emailing your friends, neighbors, community groups, churches, libraries, park area, etc., in order to spread the awareness of my missing cat, and be on the lookout in our neighborhoods--especially on the 4th with all the celebrations going on (and the shenanigans that could involve abusing cats). btw, my cat is VERY friendly, so he could easily be grabbed and abused. 8(. fyi, I live at 12th and Q; I can be reached ANYTIME (any sightings) at 2/ 683-0130 cell (email mariannalafollette at yahoo com). You can find more info and pictures on; also, there's a dc craigslist notice, You can tell people about my site and refer them to the craigslist notice, btw, for easy, quick posts, and email headsup--and verbally tell people, too. ALSO, there is a reward, btw. Thanks for your comments about the 4th this weekend, Mari. Cheers, Marianna

(edited to deal with spambots)

Also considering the insensitive & cruel comments I saw on DCist regarding Molly the dog (plus the fact it's a holiday weekend and I don't want to spend too much time filtering) comments are closed.


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Thursday, June 04, 2009

Dead cat

found in the rain, on the sidewalk at the corner of NJ and Q St on the Ward 2 side of the street, so don't walk your dogs over there.

Yes, I called the city's 311 number.
No, nobody answered because I found the tuxedo kitty after 4:30pm, when phone calls go straight to a machine.
Yes, I called animal control. They don't do dead. I was told I should call DPW.
At this point, I gave up. I'll file a report which someone will get to it when they get to it.

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Thursday, May 14, 2009


I'm going to put on Slim Gaillard's Chicken Rhythm while I type this.... imagine a song only of chicken noises.
Jimbo several days ago sent me an article about hipsters challenging city ordanances to have chickens. For the mighty and all knowing Jimbo knows of my love of chickens, live chickens. Then today in the Post's Home Section, "Hot Chicks: Legal or Not, Chickens Are the Chic New Backyard Addition," which just demands I write about chickens here.
The article confirms my suspcion that yes, the District of Columbia government is unwelcoming to urban agriculture. It would have been nice to hear from the Department of Health, not just the DCRA because in other juristictions that's the department that holds sway over these things. If there is a group of District residents fighting to overturn these laws, point me in their direction, I wanna join.
Keeping in mind that it is not legal to have chickens (neither is pot, but I smell it in my alley) in the District, here are some sites to take a look at:
Backyard Chickens- Check out their forums where people talk about their chickens and other poultry, post pictures, and discuss local chicken ordinances.
The City Chicken Project in NYC.
Small Scale Poultry Housing from the Virigina Extention.
The City Chicken- Seattle Chicken raisin'.
And check out the Stealth Chicken Coop at My Pet Chicken.

Yeah, I've been thinking about chickens for a good while.


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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Chickens in the City II

A follow up to Chickens in the City.
I found some language that looks like backyard chickens would be illegal in the District. In the "District of Columbia Municipal Regulations for Animal Control" (PDF)in sections 902 and 903 the language seems to say no fowl and they're not too keen on pigeons either. 902.7 (a) states regarding a coop, "The proposed location is not within fifty feet (50 ft.) of any building used for human habitation;" and (b) says, "The proposed location is not within two hundred and fifty feet (250 ft.) of any property line or, if this is not the case, the applicant has furnished to the Director with the written consents of all householders and owners of property located within one hundred feet (100 ft.) of the boundaries of the premises upon which fowl are to be kept, and within the same square." Sounds like the language for dogs parks in that by placing high barriers you essentially make them illegal.
It also looks like keeping bees is illegal too.
I consider those regulations unjust.


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Thursday, March 26, 2009

Chickens in the City

I woke up this morning (cue blues riff), and heard a report on WAMU saying that "Officials in the mayor's office say there is currently no law prohibiting raising chickens within city limits if residents follow guidelines on proper animal care and shelter."
As I remember, I thought there were laws on the books that in one way or another say no to chickens. Just to make sure I checked The City Chicken, which according to it's chicken law page says, "Washington D.C. Housing chickens here violates health laws and is not legal."
Then I checked the online DC Code, plugging in Chicken, poultry and fowl. DC ST § 8-1808, says, "(d) No person shall change the natural color of a baby chicken, duckling, other fowl or rabbit." and "(f) No person shall sell or offer for sale a baby chicken, duckling, other fowl, or rabbit that has had its natural color changed." and more importantly:
(h)(1) Except as provided in this subsection, no person shall import into the District, possess, display, offer for sale, trade, barter, exchange, or adoption, or give as a household pet any living member of the animal kingdom including those born or raised in captivity, except the following: domestic dogs (excluding hybrids with wolves, coyotes, or jackals), domestic cats (excluding hybrids with ocelots or margays), domesticated rodents and rabbits, captive-bred species of common cage birds, nonpoisonous snakes, fish, and turtles, traditionally kept in the home for pleasure rather than for commercial purposes, and racing pigeons (when kept in compliance with permit requirements).
As I read that, I don't interpret chickens or quail or ducks or any other fowl one may want to raise in the city as a 'common caged bird'. And if I want pigeons, or squab, they'd have to be racing pigeons and have a permit, issued by what agency I don't know.
So far with my limited knowledge it looks like chickens aren't permitted, nor are they illegal.

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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

We had this problem before

Different street, different dog, but same problem and I can't for the life of me remember how it was resolved.
This week a pit bull bolted out of a residence and attacked another dog on the street, as reported on the discussion board. I remember years ago (gawd I'm getting old) on another street nearby the same thing. A pit bull attacked Jolly, a very slow doting old beagle. The pit bull had attacked other dogs and there was much online chatter of what was to be done. The problem went away, but I can't remember the process of resolving the problem. Anyone on R Street remember


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Monday, December 01, 2008

Hey Tree Rats

...despite what the Washington Post wrote about there being no acorns, there are are acorns on Rhode Island Avenue, between 7th and 6th Streets. I also could have sworn that my feet crushed some acorns elsewhere in the hood. So Shaw squirrels rejoice, you will still be able to continue your idiotic pursuits of climbing trees, half eating nuts and tossing them aside to dig up my beets and destroy them. Stupid tree rats.

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ricky Raccoon Spotted

I went out into the backyard to dump something in the composter when I heard a noise. I saw something climbing up the tree in the alley. At first I thought it was the white-faced cat I saw climbing decks and fences earlier this morning, but this cat had a gray-brown coat. Then I thought to myself, there aren't any gray-brown cats in our alley. The critter turned it's face to me and it was a raccoon!
Yelling "Shoo-shoo shoo, nasty creature. Go away," is pointless.


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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I called animal control

Wasn't the first time.
Around about 5 something in the morning, around about the time I wake up before the radio alarm comes on, I heard the low sorrowful howl of the dog across the alley. The howling didn't wake me up. He'd been howling long since before I went to bed. So I opened up the window and spoke to him, which quieted him for about 2 minutes, and went back to bed. When I opened the window I realized it was raining.
It isn't unusual for the people of the house across the alley to just leave their dog, a beige and chocolate husky of some sort, out side for the whole weekend, or several days on end. He sits on the deck, howling every time a siren wails. Howling at night. Howling in the rain. That rain we had a week or two ago, he was out in that. I don't know how his fur works but he never seems drenched. He could be going under the deck periodically, but most of the time he just paces on the deck staring at the kitchen door.
Regardless, I called the city 311 number, who then transferred me over to the 24 hour animal control number. Apparently, I wasn't the only one. I was told, I was the second person to call this morning about the dog.
Back during the flood watch, I called animal control and they did send someone out to check on the dog. By the time they showed up, it stopped raining and the dog was just sitting on the deck, all calm like. Nothing happened. I don't know what to expect when several neighbors call because his howling is so loud and so sad. He doesn't bark, but rather belts out a low deep 'arrooogh'.
Animal Control called me back and said there was a call 2 weeks ago about the dog. They checked it out, contacted the owners, and told them they needed a dog house for the dog. Today, there is a dog house under the deck, and so animal control seems to be satisfied with the situation. Unfortunately, the dog doesn't spend any time near or in his house.

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Monday, June 26, 2006

Free kittens

Well it has been over a week and I am having a bit of trouble fostering these little darlings. So if you would like to take them off my hands it would be wonderful.
Anyway there are three kittens. Tuxedo kitty has a potential home, but I have to get back to the potential parents. Calico kitty almost had a home but Mrs. Potential Parent is resistant so I've been told to go ahead and try for a home. Calico kitty likes to be held and have her head rubbed and scratched. She has a lovely purr. Tortie kitty, I vote tortie kitty most likely to spend most of the day under the couch. She does like to play but isn't so fond of being held.
Anyway, if you can take these kitties away, like tonight or tomorrow night it would be great. I'm running out of cat food and kitty litter and time. Kitty litter is heavy and I'm car-less. This rain isn't helping. Worse yet, when the kittens were taken to the vet for spaying and neutering*, being in a room full of cats set some tingling off in my nose. So the kittens have been moved to the cellar of the house, they really need to be with people if they are going to be adopted.
I am seeing the limits of my own ability. If it was just one kitten maybe I could do this a bit longer, and give the attention needed, but three is beginning to take a toll. I was hoping I could have 2 kittens in homes Sunday, but, things just didn't work out that way.

* Sadly the vet determined the kittens to be "too small" for surgery, which I wish we all could have known what the limits were before. They will be big enough when they are over 3 lbs.


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