If you have been following the story of Mrs. Cheever and her chickens (first brought to you in Which came first, the rooster or the neighbor?, I discussed the saga between local Mrs. Cheever and her neighbors who didn’t like the noise from Mrs. Cheever’s roosters. Well, the case has been settled.

She volunteered to give up her two roosters if she could keep her hens and that is what the court decided to go with. 

Cheever was ordered by a Rockingham Superior Court judge to remove her two roosters, but will be able to keep her hens based on a March 23 decision by the town’s Zoning Board of Adjustment. The ZBA case involved complaints that Cheever had more chickens on her Atlantic Avenue property than were allowed by town ordinances.

The ZBA dismissed Cheever’s case after deciding that chickens, being fowl and not livestock, were not covered by the agriculture zoning ordinance that restricted the number of animals allowed on a property. Fullerton and other neighbors had argued that under that ordinance chickens were considered livestock and, therefore, Cheever was limited to having just four on her property. source: http://www.seacoastonline.com/articles/20100326-NEWS-3260319

So, it boils down to the fact that chickens are not livestock, but…Roosters are so they have to go? Ok that’s not right. Let’s try again. Chickens aren’t livestock, Roosters aren’t either, but since the neighbors bitched so much, she has to give them up? Ok, that doesn’t seem right either, but that is pretty much what happened.

Let’s ponder this…We live next to a log yard landing. NEXT to it. We hear chainsaws in the early morning and all weekend when the weather is decent. Trucks haul in and out of there several times a day. On the other side of us, the neighbor has a dumpster (not garbage cans, a dumpster, don’t ask.) That dumpster gets dumped every once in a while. Not often, but I heard it this morning. It was loud. Very loud. So, why haven’t Keith and I complained?

It is simple really. Because we want to be good neighbors. The log yard is the guy’s business. He needs to make an income. Who are we to stop him? Besides the fact that we like him, the log yard was there when we bought the property. We have no right to complain and if we want to complain, we could risk becoming bad neighbors.

We don’t want that. Who WOULD want that? I mean, brotherly love and all that, sure, but it is for selfish reasons really. I want our neighbors to call the fire department if they see a fire and I want them to call the police if they see a stranger. It is a simple concept really. Neighbors taking care of neighbors – wasn’t there a Neighborhood Watch movement or something? I recall seeing some stickers of that dark guy with the cape.

Now, Mrs. Cheever sounds like a nice person, I’ve never run into her at Joe’s Meat Market or the post office (that I know of). I guess I should have attended the zoning board meetings since we’re planning on having chickens on the homestead. I am not trying to come close to insinuating that she’s NOT going to call the police or fire department should she see something of concern. After all she’s been through, if it were me…I would still be a good neighbor and dial… slowly.

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