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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Luzerne County, Plains, PA, USA
    Posts
    162

    Default Maybe some free bees

    Spent last friday afternoon with my dental hygenist (hence the ouch) and we got to talking about my new found hobby, bees.

    She told me that near her home there is an old home with a few hives in the back. The owners have passed away, and the hives have been unmanaged for probably 10 or so years. I of course asked if she knew wether or not there were still bees in the hives, but she dosent want a thing to do with bees, and has kept her distance.

    I am going to take a ride out tomorrow and see what i can see from the road without trespassing (she has no idea if anyone owns the propertry, or if they would care that i walk in to see the bees ). I will take my camera and a pair of binoculars to see what i can see, and perhaps knock on a neighbors door, to see if they think my venturing closer would be acceptable.

    After 10 or more years of non-management, if there are bees in the hive(s), would they be considered "feral" or just some hardy suvivor stock? Either way, if i DO find bees, i will contact the township, perhaps they would want the bees removed, or have information on who i could contact about removing them.........i sure do want them if they are alive and healthy
    A beekeeper is not what I am, it's what I aspire to become.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Owen, WI, USA
    Posts
    2,551

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by WayneW View Post
    if there are bees in the hive(s), would they be considered "feral" or just some hardy suvivor stock?
    If the definition of "feral" is a once domesticated animal that has escaped into the wild, any unmanaged honeybee colony would be feral, right? As for them being "hardy survivor" stock, if they are alive they did indeed survive the winter, but I wouldn't call them "hardy survivors" for one winter's survival.
    There is no way of knowing if they are descendants of the colonies from 10 years ago or just a swarm thrown from a managed colony of last year. If there are bees in those colonies, they did at least survive the winter so that is a good reason to collect them.
    I am not sure of your weather out there but I would try to find out soon about those colonies. If there are indeed unmanaged bees in any of those boxes, they may very well need some late winter feed. It would be a shame to see them get this far through winter, then starve in the last few weeks.
    Sheri

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN, USA
    Posts
    575

    Default

    Hi Wayne,
    Even though the owners of the old home place have died, someone must now own the property. Wouldn't it be prudent to try to find out who currently owns the property? County tax records should reveal the owners name to you. The property (and bees) could have been left to another family member, children, heirs, etc. Once you find that out, you could contact the current owner and inquire if they would allow you to have at the bees there. That said, I wish you the best of luck. Perhaps you will be able to get some free bees. I will be curious to learn what you discover.
    "My child, eat honey, for it is good." (Proverbs 24:13)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Luzerne County, Plains, PA, USA
    Posts
    162

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Fred Bee View Post
    Hi Wayne,
    Even though the owners of the old home place have died, someone must now own the property. Wouldn't it be prudent to try to find out who currently owns the property? County tax records should reveal the owners name to you. The property (and bees) could have been left to another family member, children, heirs, etc. Once you find that out, you could contact the current owner and inquire if they would allow you to have at the bees there. That said, I wish you the best of luck. Perhaps you will be able to get some free bees. I will be curious to learn what you discover.
    Yes, since my original post, and after thinking it through, i will be asking neighbors and such if they know anything. Also, of course before i take anything, i will be certain of who currently owns the property/hives.
    A beekeeper is not what I am, it's what I aspire to become.

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