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Author Topic: how far apart to place hives  (Read 3435 times)
potomacjoe
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« on: May 01, 2005, 04:36:44 PM »

Greetings, we are getting our first bees (ever) May 9th. I think I read it somewhere, but have read so much can't remember where I read what.. anyway.. is there are certain distance to keep between each colony? In photos, I usually see 2 placed together on a pallet.. any info would be greatly appreciated.
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Finsky
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« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2005, 05:22:24 PM »

Quote from: potomacjoe
Greetings, we are getting our first bees (ever) May 9th. I think I read it somewhere, but have read so much can't remember where I read what.. anyway.. is there are certain distance to keep between each colony? In photos, I usually see 2 placed together on a pallet.. any info would be greatly appreciated.


 I like that there is free space around a hive. Over 1m or over  3 feet is good.  I use 1,5 m, if I have space. It is better that you can work with hive from both sides. And you have space to lay down boxes, frames, chake bees in front of hive,  etc.

If you go to upper wind side and the odour of human goes to the hive, most hives become nervous. It is better to work on lower side.  Also it is pleasant to choose the sun direction, how you stand.

I see no advantage to put hives in tight row.

If you put 4 same looking hives in one row, bees cannot calculate. When it is cool weather, they often flyes in  panic and goes into wrong entry. And often they are killed if they do not have honey or pollen.
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SherryL
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« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2005, 06:10:23 PM »

Joe, I have plenty of room to work with, so mine are about 4 feet apart in a triangular shape - all facing SE.  

Don't know if this pic will load, but it's of my 2 original hives and a swarm (from one of the hives) captured in a nuc.  Eventually that 'nuc' became the 3rd hive.  The angle is a little deceiving, they work a little further apart than they look.  

Notice I also have different colored entrance boards for the bees.  I've seen commercial bee yards with hive VERY close together, but again, space is money for them.  If you don't have to have them right on top of each other, I wouldn't for the same reasons Finsky mentions.


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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2005, 08:57:31 AM »

I often have them right up against each other.  Occasionally when the are robbing their neighbor I move them further apart.

In short, minimum distance between hives is none.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
Horns Pure Honey
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« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2005, 04:40:13 PM »

I have say 3 feet between mine so it is just easier to walk between them, bye Cheesy
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Ryan Horn
Kenai
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« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2005, 02:29:22 PM »

Along the same lines, how far apart do you space you bee yards?  I realize that there are different characteristics such as available forage, climate, number of hive per yard, ect.  But, can you generalize how far apart you would have to place yards containing 40 hives with average forage?  1 mile? 2 miles? Ect.

I have 4 hives at one location and would like to expand it to, say 40 hives.  About 1.5 miles away, another farmer said that he would not mind if I put some hives there.  Is this reasonable if some day in the future I had 40 hives at both locations?

Finally, how do you know if the density of your hives is to great?  Do you look at per hive production or something else?
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GeeBeeNC
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« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2005, 03:03:33 PM »

There are 640 acres in a square mile and most crops require at least 2 hives per acre for polination if that helps any.  Seems to me that some diversity of nectar sources in the area would be a factro in bee load.

There are 18095.5 acres in the 3 mile radius that we're told a hive will forage.  80 hives doesn't seem like much of a load for an area like that.

GeeB, more expereinced in math than beekeeping.
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GeeB

If the world were merely seductive,
That would be easy.

If it were merely challenging,
That would be no problem.

But I arise in the morning torn
Between a desire to improve the world
And a desire to enjoy the world.

That makes it hard to plan the day.
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Kenai
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« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2005, 03:15:58 PM »

Thanks GeeBeeNC.  That was the answer I was hoping for.  I am still new enough at this that when someone offers to let me put hive in, I don't want to pass the opportunity by.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2005, 11:42:24 AM »

In my area 25 hives in one location seems to be about the point of diminishing returns.  More hives won't yeild much more honey.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
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