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  1. #1
    Jason G in Tennessee Guest

    Question

    I have heard from numerous, and might I add, reliable sources that killing a hive of bees is illegal. Is there a site that has info about this?
    Is it a federal or state by state law?
    I appreciate the info!
    JG in TN

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    dahlonega,ga USA
    Posts
    39

    Post

    I was talking with Fat_Beeman today and he said that the honey bees are a protected species now, like the bald eagle is. If one killed off a hive, that would result in a SERIOUS fine!

    I haven't been able to find anything yet on it, as my internet connection is unbearably slow tonight.
    steve

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,553

    Post

    They have to be able to get rid of mean hives and mean AHBs. I don't know of any law. It should be against the law to kill the nice ones.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,452

    Post

    I haven't heard of anything like that. Back when bees crossed the boarder into Canada, beekeepers commonly killed off all their hives late fall and bought packages every spring. It was big business for american beekeepers. I doubt if anything exists up here like that, even years after the closure...
    Seem like an impossible law to enforce.

    Ian

    [This message has been edited by Ian (edited October 21, 2003).]

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    brown county,indiana,usa
    Posts
    571

    Wink

    i've an exterminator tell me, that they tell people it is illegal to kill honeybees,he said he did this because he liked bees and couldn't stand the thought of killing a hive.

  6. #6
    BILLY BOB Guest

    Post

    I will have to do some checking, so I realy shouldn't be posting yet. I think the law says that you have to get the permision of a local beekeeper, or certified beekeeper before killing a hive off. Can't be for sure but I will get back to you on that. I do think it is a state law.

    BB

    [This message has been edited by BILLY BOB (edited October 21, 2003).]

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    michigan
    Posts
    393

    Post

    Without getting into the law, the general legalities center around the "chemicals" used and the labeling. Most of the common substances have a bee warning and the label is the law.

  8. #8

    Big Grin

    I don't think fat_beeman is correct. Here's the link to the U.S. federal endangered species act and under the insect section, I don't find honeybees (apis) listed.
    http://endangered.fws.gov/wildlife.html

    There might be individual states that have laws against killing honeybee colonies but that would be on a state-by-state basis. And like Michael (and others) have said, there certainly has to be a "legal" way to kill an AHB colony - certainly Texas has no such law protecting honeybees. And typically, homeowners have historically (and legally) always been allowed to do what's necessary to protect their home (including killing honeybees in walls of their own home).
    WineMan brings up a good point; and I believe violating pesticide labeling is a 'federal' violation (not just state law).
    But there are chemicals which will do the job that a homeowner can buy and apply themself as well as the option of calling a licensed pest control company.
    Not having done the research here, I'll nevertheless go out on a limb and say I'd wager most states don't have any laws on the books regarding the killing of honeybee colonies. I realize this has been an "old wives tell" for many years but I'm afraid it just ain't so, at least in most areas.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    dahlonega,ga USA
    Posts
    39

    Post

    I think we were talking about how someone who uses pesticides to kill the bees if they land on their property. That is probably what he was talking about it being illegal, with the pesticide use.
    But i have seen a few documents where for instance in texas they are working with federal agencies as texas has lost "80%" of its bees over the past 10 or 12 years. Not sure how accurate that info is. I do remember they were saying they were creating a program to stop the killing of honeybees.
    steve

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    Posts
    5,159

    Post

    I have had exterminators tell me that they were only able to kill honeybees if they endanger people or property.

    The exterminators in this area have people call me, or they will themselves to find if the bees can be removed first. If I deem that they could not be removed sucessfully then they will kill them.

    It is odd how many exterminators don't want to kill bees. Perhaps they don't want the medical liabilities.

    ------------------
    Bullseye Bill
    Smack dab in the middle of the country.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,553

    Post

    It's true that most pesticides have specifications on how to use them so they don't kill bees, and as has been said the label is considered the law on the application of that pesticide. So, in a round about way, it may be illegal to use a pesticide so labled to kill bees. Since none are labeled for the purpose of killing bees maybe it would be illegal to use them for that.

    On the other hand soapy water will do, but then soapy water has not been approved as a pesticide and it may technically be illegal to use soapy water to kill bugs. (don't tell the organic gardeners).

  12. #12

    Arrow

    skruzich,
    I don't think Texas has lost those kind of numbers of hives (at least, not due to pesticide poisoning). I had also heard that 90% of wild (feral) colonies had been killed off by Varroa mites. While I may {selectively} believe some of these figures and not believe others, 'hard facts' are very difficult to come by.
    I think the program in Texas you're referring to, is the eradication program of the cotton bole weevil. Yes, there were some honeybee colonies killed by aerial spraying of cotton fields. And a rule was very quickly adopted that made it mandatory for crop dusters to notify the county extension agent that aerial spraying was going to take place in a certain area, so many days in advance. This was designed to allow the beekeeper in the affected area to remove his hives. Apparently this system has worked, as the loss of honeybee colonies due to aerial pesticide application has ceased.

  13. #13
    Jason G in Tennessee Guest

    Question

    Is this all just one big urban legend of the bee world?
    Does anyone have any clear cut -"on paper" info for me that states exactly what laws may apply?
    I would hate to disseminate info that would be inacurate to the community concerning non-existant laws... urban legends of the bee world.

  14. #14
    Jason G in Tennessee Guest

    Question

    Is this all just one big urban legend of the bee world?
    Does anyone have any clear cut -"on paper" info for me that states exactly what laws may apply?
    I would hate to disseminate info that would be inacurate to the community concerning non-existant laws... urban legends of the bee world.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,553

    Post

    In the Omaha yellow pages there are literally hundreds of Pest control entries. There are at lest 10 or so that specify bees along with roaches, yellow jackets, hornets etc. Many just say "insects" without any specifics. I'm sure they are not saving the bees.

    I don't know about all the states, but there is no federal law that directly prohibits killing bees. The rest of this is all indirect. The labels are law and they specify how to NOT kill bees with the pesticide, but I doubt that any federal agency has any concern about people purposefully killing bees in their house or a tree near their house. They are concerned about pesticide spraying that was not intended for bees inadvertantly killing domestic or feral hives and therfore impacting the environment and/or the ecomony of the beekeepers involved. This is their reason for the labeling mentioning bees and how to NOT kill them.

  16. #16

    Sad

    Jason,
    I think you're asking for something that doesn't exist (even on the internet!). I agree with Michael, I know of no federal laws which prohibit the killing of a honeybee hive. So the step down from there are, "state laws". And as I've already mentioned, they're as likely varied as the fifty states.
    I know of no concise, clear cut, "on paper" summary information from all fifty states that address this issue. This answer can be found in the agriculture statues from each of the individual states. I don't know of anyone who has researched the state ag laws from all the states and made a concise report of their findings. And furthermore, even if there were such a document, it would more than likely be out of date the next time their state legislatures met. I do keep abreast of the Texas laws regarding honeybees which is why I was able to tell you earlier that no such law(s) exist for Texas regarding the killing of a honeybee colony.
    Perhaps not the answer you wanted to hear.

  17. #17
    Jason G in Tennessee Guest

    Post

    Thanks all!
    Very helpful!
    Jason

  18. #18

    Post

    Yes it is illegal to kill honey bees in the US (Sort of). I don't know the exact reference, however you can look in the EPA statues (Federal). The reason is that there is no pesticide registered to kill honey bees. To use any chemical/pesticide outside it's registered use is a civil violation, and enforced by fines. The main reason that in most areas of the country exterminators will not kill honey bees is because if they were to use a pesticide to kill honey bees and they were reported, they could lose their extermination license/permits (state/local)for using a pesticide outside its licensed use, and then would be out of business. In those areas where AHB is dominate, Exterminators can get special permits that allow extermination of AHB/suspected AHB colonies. The preferred method of extermination for those areas is to remove the hive intact, or as best as posible and then freeze the hive. If you are interested in getting ferral hives a good source is to let your local exterminators know that you are interested in removing these hives, and a lot of times they will refer customers to you.


    ------------------

  19. #19
    Jason G in Tennessee Guest

    Post

    LOL!

  20. #20

    Cool

    > Yes it is illegal to kill honey bees in the US...I don't know the exact reference,

    Ahh...therein lies the problem (no reference)!

    > ...however you can look in the EPA statues (Federal).

    No, YOU can look in the fed statues. Sorry but I've got better things to do with my time than to look for laws that don't exist.
    --
    BTW, Panhandle Bee man, what about spraying with just a garden hose (i.e., water - bees drown very easily - they're notoriously poor swimmers), would THAT be against the EPA?
    --
    If ya gona run with the big dogs....ya gots to have your "proof"! (That's what this whole discussion has been about)

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