Skip to main content

The City of Bloomington allows for the care and keeping of chickens within the city limits. Minimal restrictions are in place to harbor goodwill between neighbors and to support the individual homeowner's desire for self-sufficiency of food supply (chickens may be slaughtered on permit holder's property) and/or the keeping of chickens for pets or show.


Chicken Flock

A chicken flock is defined as no more than 5 hens and no roosters.


A single chicken flock is allowed to be kept by a homeowner living in a residential single-family neighborhood zoned (RE) or (RS).

Chicken Coops and Runs

A chicken coop and a chicken run are required in order to maintain chickens pursuant to a permit. A chicken coop may be a fixed or moveable structure. It must be secure housing that is properly ventilated to house the chickens from the elements.

A chicken run is an area that is securely fenced to allow chicken's access to an outdoor area that is protected from predators and provides adequate amounts of sun and shade..

Permits and Inspections

If you desire to have chickens and live in an approved area, you must obtain a permit from Animal Care and Control, located at 3410 Old State Road 37 South, before acquiring your birds.

A permit is good for one year and must be renewed annually, for each year you wish to maintain a flock. No fee is charged for a permit.

Once you are approved for a permit, your chicken coop and associated chicken run will be inspected by an Animal Care and Control Officer. The inspection is to ensure that:

  • all setbacks are followed - the chicken coop and run must be located at least twenty (20) feet from any building used for human housing and not owned by the chicken owner and must be located at least twelve (12) feet from the property line of any neighboring lot;
  • that the coop and associated chicken run are appropriately sized for the number of birds to be kept - twelve (12) square feet per bird in the run;
  • a visual barrier surrounds the chicken coop and run that is at least four feet (4) tall if the coop and run are visible to occupants of neighboring lots;

All who keep a flock of chickens are expected to keep their flock in a manner that is clean and sanitary in order to not pose a public health risk or a public nuisance. The chicken coop and run must be kept clean, dry and odor free. The coop, run and surrounding area must be free from trash and accumulated droppings.

All chickens must be provided feed and water at all times and must be kept securely and enclosed on the permit holder's property.

See the Municipal Code on "Standards for Maintaining Chicken Flocks


Chicken Flock Permit Application. Print out this file and return it to Animal Care and Control at the Animal Shelter: 2410 Old State Rd 37 South. Print applications are available there as well.

If you should have any questions regarding the keeping of chickens, you may call Animal Care and Control at 812-349-3492.