21 January 2023

Wilbur the rooster with hens

Save Wilbur the Rooster ‑ Urgent!

UPDATE: JAN 25, 2023


Wilbur can sing loud and proud!!

We received notice today that our neighbor has withdrawn their complaints against Wilbur. That means that the citations and fines are dropped and that he gets to stay with his flock! This is due, in large part, to the groundswell of support that we received from our local community, the media, government officials and from the almost 25,000 people who signed this petition.

We read the name of each signer on this petition and read each and every comment. We are humbled and grateful for the words of encouragement, thoughtful insight and quotable quotes.

Thank you for rallying behind the cause to protect rural activities in rural areas and for helping to Let Him Crow!!

Jackie Tanenbaum portrait
24,785 have signed Jackie Tanenbaum’s petition.

Visit petition page


Save Wilbur! Wilbur is a 2 year-old rooster who has lived in the Hereford Zone of northern Baltimore County his entire life. He is such a good boy--he protects his flock from threats, eats from your hand and only indulges in his favorite treat of blueberries after he’s sure that all the hens have had some first. His chirps, wiggles and wing-flapping-antics make us laugh every day.

Wilbur joined us on our ~5 acre property in August of 2022* and, since day one, one of our neighbors has complained about his crows. This couple is new to rural living and finds the sound of Wilbur’s crow so disturbing that they’ve filed multiple complaints against us with Animal Services. While they say that Wilbur is a nuisance, we say that rural living isn’t silent—it’s free from blaring horns, car alarms, and loud music—but its soundtrack includes sounds from farm equipment, chainsaws, cow bells, hunting rifles, big trucks and of course, rooster crows.

So, we’re going to court and want your help!! We appear in front of the Animal Hearing Board soon to defend Wilbur’s right to be a rooster in the country. Please sign this petition asking the Animal Hearing Board to dismiss the case and associated fines against Wilbur. Do not let this case set legal precedent allowing one complaining neighbor to threaten the rural and rooted-in-agriculture-lifestyle that so many of us in the Hereford Zone love.

*Under applicable Baltimore County law, there are no restrictions on having roosters on properties over an acre as long as they aren’t a “nuisance.”