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Author Topic: Hive Location near house  (Read 2803 times)

Offline HBW1412

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Hive Location near house
« on: February 06, 2011, 10:03:43 PM »
After searching the internet for hours I have decided to ask those of you in the know...

I am in the process of reestablishing the apiary that my dad and grandfather had years ago.  I'm going to put the majority of the hives in the same area where they had theirs.  The main group of hives is about a mile from the house on our farm, but I'd like to put a couple of hives near the house so I can just look at them.

What is a safe distance from the house or other structures to place these two hives?  There are children and pets around our home which is why I ask this question.  I have plenty of space, but people in the city raise bees in a small yard and they have children and pets also.

Thank you in advance for any information you all provide.

Offline AllenF

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2011, 10:08:51 PM »
There are 11 hives in my back yard between the house, barn, shop, and chicken pen, right in the middle.   Mow next to them.  Walk next to them every single day of the week to work.  Just don't worry about them.   In the summer, people come to pick the blueberries less than 100 yards from the hives and never had any problems.  Most people don't even know they are there or what they are.  

Offline iddee

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Offline Robo

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2011, 10:24:48 PM »
Main thing is just to choose a location that the 10 feet or so in front of them does not see a lot of activity.  If you can't do than,  some snow fence or other barrier 2ft in front of the hives will cause the bee traffic to go up and overhead.
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Offline Two Bees

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2011, 11:28:58 PM »
I have mine about 75 feet from my deck with no problems.  I am just conscious as to their flight paths but I don't think it's a big deal.  I am thinking of putting one right next to the deck so I can keep a good watch on it.   :-D
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Online Michael Bush

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2011, 03:48:43 AM »
I've had bees ten feet from the frequently used back door with no issues.  I've also had them more than 100 yards from the door and had some bees turn vicious and that was too close...

Mainly keep an eye on them.  If they start getting defensive or mean, requeen them and/or move them.
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Offline tillie

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2011, 09:26:05 AM »
I love having mine on my deck.  I have hives in other places, but the ones by my house can be observed every day.  I have learned so much just from seeing them AM - PM right outside the door.  

I have two dogs and grandkids that are often over.  I bought my grandson a bee veil and he often sits and watches with me.

I don't have them there right now because I plan to move this year and think it will be difficult to sell a house with beehives on the otherwise usable deck. :evil:

The real estate agent helping me hunt for a new house finds it amusing that I want to see the backyard and determine if it would be bee-friendly before I even look inside the house!   "I could put beehives right there," I say.  "Oh, my," he says and then we go inside.  :lol: :-D :-D

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Offline David McLeod

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2011, 10:33:45 AM »
I'm setting up a platform for mine now and I live on a 3/4 acre lot. Space is at a premium as the back half is dedicated to my garden (100'x100') and the back yard is reserved for my 2yo. The hives are going to be on the front northwest corner on the line. This is about fifteen foot from my wife's parking space and maybe thirty feet from the front corner of the house. I plan on a max of ten if it gets to that. Just to be safe though I plan to face the hives north onto the neighbor's lot. :evil: I guess I get to cut his grass for that one. LOL
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Offline tandemrx

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2011, 12:16:15 PM »
I have my backyard hive set up within a little lanscape "island".  This has worked well because it separates it from most backyard activities by a nice distance (actually expanded the "island" in front of the hive so that mowing/other activies are a safe distance away).  Neighbors house is in background and they have a mowing service.  Tree barrier & island help direct bees up and away from neighbors and their lawn service people. Yet I can watch activities of the hive easily from my home office (looking at it right now, but it is surrounded by a bunch of snow  :( )


Offline bailey

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2011, 12:54:04 PM »
i have 10 to 18 hives in my back yard all summer long,
35 to 40 feet from my back door.
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Offline WPG

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2011, 08:00:14 PM »

The real estate agent helping me hunt for a new house finds it amusing that I want to see the backyard and determine if it would be bee-friendly before I even look inside the house!   "I could put beehives right there," I say.  "Oh, my," he says and then we go inside.  :lol: :-D :-D

Linda T in Atlanta

Tillie,
Glad to see you have your priorities in proper order. :lol:

HBW....,
When I was younger(by a few decades :roll:)we lived in town on a corner lot. My dad had his 6 hives spread along the picket fence on the north side of the backyard inbetween shrubbery.
I would come home in a hurry leaping up the steps past two of the hives.
They were close enough to the walkway that I could have reached out and rapped on both of them as I went by.

Never had a problem.
Never wore protection mowing.
But I didn't wear flipflops and shorts.

The one veil in the household was his. :shock: :-D

Nothing close in front of them, but enough trees in the yard that they went up at a pretty steep angle to clear sky before they foraged.


If you can't have an observation hive I'd put one on a stand where you could watch them from your breakfast table.

Goodluck and have fun.
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Offline HBW1412

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2011, 03:42:36 PM »
I'd really like to thank everyone for the replies.  Knowing that others have been placing hives close to their homes for years does indeed ease my mind.  It is interesting to hear some of you say you have mowed around your bees with no issue.  When I was younger my dad always made me be as quiet as I could and to make no sudden or erratic moves when we went to his bee yard.  This was 25 or 30 years ago when he had about 200 hives so maybe he thought I would scare his bees away if I "acted up" around them.   :-D

Anyway, I really appreciate the information and experiences you all have shared. 

Offline Acebird

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2011, 08:53:05 PM »
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There are children and pets around our home which is why I ask this question.


Bees will never bother your pets.  You got kids?  Give them a banana and send them out screaming and yelling in front of the hive.  Just kidding... :-D

Michael B as usual has the best response.

Kids will torture pets because they are kids but they will never mess with bees and it is more likely they will be bitten by a pet in the back yard than stun by a bee.
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Offline Picobrew

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2011, 10:22:29 PM »
Bees will never bother your pets. 

How about the inverse?  My dog works diligently at biting all manner of stinging insects.  Do you think they will reach an accord when the odds are 30,000:1?
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Offline wd

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #14 on: February 08, 2011, 11:10:53 PM »

I used bushes and a fence to obstruct the flight path on all but one side. Bushes are 15 ft high fairly thick, fence is six ft high. My dog and cat learned to respect the bees. Since then the locations changed, closest hive now is a drive away.

Offline HBW1412

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #15 on: February 09, 2011, 12:23:15 AM »
It sounds like some hives are a good candidate for close to home observations while some may be too aggressive.  I guess this would only be determined after a period of time with the hive close to the house.  It might be a difficult, albeit a painful way to learn which hive is appropriate to have close by, but at least I know it can be done safely as long as common sense precautions are taken.

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #16 on: February 09, 2011, 01:37:09 AM »
You can place your hives as close to the house as you like, but I wouldn't recomment using them for a porch.
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Online Michael Bush

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2011, 05:57:47 AM »
I will say this about kids.  When I was growing up I often stepped barefoot on bees and got stung.  We have no bee hives in the yard.  My kids always had beehives in the yard and only one of them was ever stung that I know of.  My kids were more aware of the bees than I was as a kid...
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Offline tillie

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #18 on: February 09, 2011, 08:58:50 AM »
Odd considerations for hives near the house from one who learned by experience:

1. I had to cut off all outdoor lighting in the back of my house.  If not, all night long bees killed themselves on the outside lights

2. Dogs bring bees into the house on their fur.  My black pomeranian must look like a miniature bear to them and they always come in on his back.  My first sting as a beekeeper came from stepping barefoot on a bee in the house who came in with the dog.

3. Although I used my deck where the bees were all the time, nonbeekeeping visitors that I had would not go out there.

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Offline wd

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #19 on: February 09, 2011, 01:17:30 PM »

Have fun with your bees!

« Last Edit: February 10, 2011, 09:59:01 PM by wd »

Offline Acebird

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2011, 04:04:02 PM »
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1. I had to cut off all outdoor lighting in the back of my house.  If not, all night long bees killed themselves on the outside lights

We were concerned about this on the placement of our hive.  It is very close to an automated bill board sign that is obviously lighted with high power lights.  The thing is we never see any bees flying around the lights or dead bees on the ground so it can't be that much of a problem.
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Offline thegolfpsycho

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #21 on: February 10, 2011, 02:08:25 AM »
My dog nosed around the hives until he got stung.  His ugly old face swelled up and he was pretty miserable, laying around feeling sorry for himself the rest of the day.  But he was fine the next day and never bothered them again.  I don't know what a sting would have done to a small dog.  Madmax tipped the scale around 75 lbs.

Offline jdnewberry

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #22 on: February 10, 2011, 02:29:47 AM »
My home is on a "postage stamp" lot in a subdivision.  From my back door to the lot line is only 20 feet away.  When I started beekeeping, I immediately got three hives and had to put them in the back yard until I found another location for the apiary.  Never an issue.

I mowed and weed-eated around the hives about twice a week, kids and pets never had problems, and believe it or not, the neighbors were fine, too.  I made a point to locate a gentle race that met my requirements, then never looked back.  Though, it always helped with the neighbors when I delivered a nice jar of honey after harvest...

I have made one observation that I've never heard anyone else talk about...  The more exposure my bees had to me, the gentler they were.  When I finally moved them out into other apiaries, they never were quite as gentle.  I only see them about once a week now, versus every day.  They're still easy going, but i can't work them in shorts and a t-shirt anymore.

Offline tillie

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #23 on: February 10, 2011, 11:41:37 AM »
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The more exposure my bees had to me, the gentler they were.

I would agree - I think it isn't about "you" but rather about the more exposure to being intruded on - my bees in Rabun County came from Don in Lula and they are the gentlest bees when first you meet them.  I have them in Atlanta in a top bar hive and in Rabun county. 

I'm checking on the top bar weekly during bee season and those bees remained calm and gentle throughout the season.  The bees in Rabun only saw me (or had my intrusion into their hive) about once a month and they got much less friendly as the season went on - in August I went into the hive expecting my usual gloveless, only a bee veil experience and boy, did I sing a different tune after multiple stings.  So after that I only visited them fully suited.

Don is in his bee yard constantly, daily, hourly, and his bees at his house are dreamy to be around, but the fact of their lives is that their hives are frequently opened.

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Offline edward

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Re: Hive Location near house
« Reply #24 on: February 10, 2011, 11:42:36 PM »
If you have normal bees the only time they will bee a newsense is if you walk bare foot on flowers on your lawn.   :cindi:

If you are a girl with long newly washed hair that smells of flowers.  :mrgreen:  :-D

And if they need to drink water.

So try to provide a water source so they can drink without drowning.  :drowning:

I have 12 hives in my yard , hardly ever see any bees  :(

They are too busy to stay in my yard , they are always flying all over the entire neighborhood.

mvh edward :P

 

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