Chicken proposal is for the birds
In response to the request for having chickens in Spring Hill, Brooksville or any other urban or suburban area — you have got to be kidding. Are roosters worse than hens? Yes. Are hens quiet and acceptable in close proximity to other homes? Absolutely not.
Anyone who has ever had or been around chickens knows better. Hens, when laying eggs, are as loud as roosters, and they are not on a schedule to only make their loud cackling when convenient to some daytime workers. Many people work nights and really need to get some sleep even it is inconvenient to some.
I, unlike some people frequenting the commission meetings, have extended experience in raising fowl. Not to say I am an expert, but I can give an honest, knowledgeable response to this situation.
Chemical-free eggs are available in practically all our grocery stores, even though they cost a little more than the regular eggs. Nobody can raise backyard chickens and collect their own eggs anywhere close to the cost of the eggs from the stores. Feed and any other associated costs will be far more than going to the grocery store.
Besides the noise and the cost of raising chickens, the stench is terrible. Of course, if fluctuates with the number of chickens, but it is definitely there regardless.
I had to laugh out loud when one of our commissioners stated that chickens don't smell. This was an embarrassment to the County Commission and the people of Hernando County.
Also, if there is anything that we don't need more of it is raw sewage being dumped on the ground to find its way into our water supply, wells, etc. This would only add to the waste being dumped into our water supply by who knows how many pets in this county.
If anyone takes a serious, unbiased look at this dooryard chicken request, you won't even consider it or waste the commission's time. This county has a lot more problems with which to be concerned. To look at a request is reasonable. Wasting time on this is not common sense.
Danny R. Schoonover, Spring Hill
Saving a life is a pure act of valor | Dan DeWitt column, March 3
Deputy shows his true character
Having known Deputy Scot Lamia in high school I have recollections of a warm, sensible individual and a young man of good will. Following his career in the news over the years caused me to worry that some good part of him had been lost.
After reading Dan DeWitt's column I am reassured that a good deputy remains a good man as well. Congratulations, Scott. Many people are proud of you.
Barrett Hardy, Spring Hill
Trap, yes; but don't release March 1, letter
Don't mess with the laws of nature
According to a recent letter writer, those of us that allow our domestic cats to roam on our property should be fined because our cats occasionally kill birds, squirrels, lizards and other "endangered species," and because they severely threaten our fragile ecosystem.
Fine. Let's spend a few million dollars to increase the size and scope of government to ferret out people who let their cats run freely, and slap a citation on them, maybe even a little incarceration, to teach them a lesson, to get with the program.
While we're throwing government money around to achieve what the writer wishes, perhaps we could ante up a few more million for a study on how many billions of birds and mammals are devoured by raptors every year, and then devise a plan to cull the raptors so as to insure a balanced ecosystem, an ecosystem that cats have been a part of throughout history.
I have at least 25 bird feeders, and an equal amount of birdhouses on my property, as well as four birdbaths. I enjoy watching the birds. I don't enjoy watching my cat kill one, but she has killed far fewer dove, robins, cedar waxwings and cardinals than all the red shouldered hawks that are so ubiquitous.
I have a dog that has killed close to 20 squirrels and as many snakes, in the last three years. I have two other dogs that routinely kill lizards. Must I keep them inside and teach them to use a litter box? Dogs and cats have been killing birds and smaller animals for eons. As much as the letter writer dislikes it, this is a fact of nature and to try to change the laws of nature is foolish and ill-advised.
Alex Vann, Brooksville
Coyotes, hawks the real killers
Several years ago we had feral cats in the neighborhood. We also had bobwhites calling and coming by with their broods. Rabbits were abundant. Then a large area of land was cleared and the coyotes came. The feral cats disappeared along with the rabbits and bobwhites.
Moles and voles are destructively tunneling through the yards now that the cats do not get rid of them. People are using poison to get rid of the pests, thus poisoning the aquifer. A short-tailed hawk regularly swoops through the yard carrying off birds.
Use common sense. If the cats are spayed and neutered, they will eventually disappear. Then what will you do about the coyotes?
Margaret Reid, Spring Hill