The Many Benefits of Backyard Chickens

UPDATE: On March 2nd, the City of Toronto officially launched the UrbanHensTO Pilot. TFPC’s UrbanHensTO Resource Page is live and will be continually updated.

Toronto hen experts, Lorraine Johnson and Adam Dirks, recently wrote this piece titled: The Many Benefits of Backyard Chickens as the City of Toronto prepares to launch their 3-year UrbanHenTO Pilot Project.

Lucky for you, The TFPC has put together a resource page for all your hen needs that will be updated frequently. Find it here and in our menu at the top right corner of every page.

Lorraine and Adam will soon be facilitating workshops in each of the 4 chosen wards (Ward 5, 13, 21, and 32) where the pilot will be taking place. Workshops will cover the pilot requirements for residents, basic care for hens, how to prevent and detect disease, best practices for feeding and care for hens, and coop designs. More details here.

Read their bio’s below!

Lorraine Johnson is a writer, editor and activist based in Toronto. Her book City Farmer: Adventures in Urban Food Growing tells stories of inspiring and innovative projects that are transforming our cities into places of productivity (and includes a chapter on Lorraine’s backyard hen-keeping adventures). She also writes books about native plant gardening and environmental issues. She has been involved in the community gardening movement for decades and is an active advocate for legalizing backyard hens in Toronto. She edits the magazine Ground: Landscape Architect Quarterly (


Adam Dirks is a farmer and educator who works for PACT Grow to Learn. He focuses on designing and implementing holistic community composting systems and has been keeping hens in cities for over 8 years.