News Release
March 2, 2018

Beginning today, residents in four wards in Toronto can keep hens in their backyards as part of the new Urban HensTO pilot program. This program, which allows Torontonians to keep up to four hens for the purposes of enjoyment and egg production, runs until March 2, 2021.

To be eligible to take part in the program, residents must:
• live in a house or townhouse with a backyard
• reside in Ward 5 (Etobicoke-Lakeshore), Ward 13 (Parkdale-High Park), Ward 21 (St. Paul’s) or Ward 32 (Beaches-East York)
• register their hens with the City at
• construct the coop in compliance with local zoning requirements.

Hens continue to be prohibited animals in the City of Toronto unless the above criteria are met. Roosters are prohibited city-wide.

To help potential hen owners learn more about the pilot program, staff from Toronto Animal Services and the Toronto Food Policy Council are holding workshops, hosted by the local councillor.

At the following workshops, residents will have the opportunity to learn about pilot requirements, basic care for hens, how to prevent and detect disease, best practices for feeding and caring for hens, and coop designs:
• Ward 13 (Parkdale-High Park): Swansea Town Hall, 95 Lavinia Ave.
Wednesday, March 7, 7 to 9 p.m.
• Ward 21 (St. Paul’s): St. Matthew’s United Church, 729 St. Clair Ave. W.
Saturday, March 17, 10 a.m. to noon
• Ward 5 (Etobicoke-Lakeshore): Etobicoke Civic Centre, 399 The West Mall Saturday, April 14, 10 a.m. to noon
• Ward 32 (Beaches-East York): Danforth Mennonite Church, 2174 Danforth Ave.
Saturday, April 21, 10 a.m. to noon

Residents who have complaints about hens should contact 311.

More information about the pilot program and workshops is available at

Toronto is Canada’s largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of about 2.8 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance, arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world’s most livable cities. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow us on Twitter at, on Instagram at or on Facebook at

Tammy Robbinson
Strategic Communications