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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Bozeman Montana
    Posts
    316

    Default Montana commercial apiary site laws and new beekeepers

    First I would like to say that I have no illusion of becoming a apiary that would be profitable beyond covering cost for several years and growing no bigger than a 10-20 thousand dollar income in the next decade. I have a good job that's low paying and I enjoy beekeeping enough to want to make it successfull and making a supplemental income would be a nice thing for our family. So as you must know ,the laws here state that an apiary site be no closer than a three mile radius and that is determined by the state via their maps and gps . You apply they tell you. After failing to qualify at any and all the sites that have been offered I talked with the state office to find out that 46% of the states land mass is spoken for and counting the land that is uninhabited that would leave about nothing. My area no longer has a commercial site available at all. I have ranchers and farmers tell me that they have not seen hives in years around their land and yet the areas are off limits. I hear rumors of larger companies owning the rights so to speak and wonder if this is true? I also wonder, if those of you who are large enough to know and have large holdings of sites , where to lease them or make other agreements to smaller beekeepers who are wanting to grow and not break the laws ? Are the giant apiaries willing to do this? Can you become a sideliner in Montana legally? Are the very large apiaries hostlile towards these ideas? I will not now or ever try to ruin a persons lively hood or in anyway jepordise their land, livestock, crops ect.. But I was curious of a plan for the future for other beekeepers not related to these site holders. I cant see bieng able to purchase a large established apiary or farm or ranch so Iam wondering what I might do. If you have any insights to what a good healthy course of action might be please comment. Or if you are a bigger apiary in your state and have made deals with smaller guys for sites that you may not be using, let us know an appropriate way to go about getting involved . Thank you for any advice or comment you make in advance charlie

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Spokane, Washington, USA
    Posts
    1,010

    Default Re: Montana commercial apiary site laws and new beekeepers

    Many beekeepers in your area. Just because you dont see bees doesn't mean they are not there. If you are a sideliner, you can legally keep 5 hives per yard without registration and distance issues. Renting and buying yards is sometimes an option. Talk to the commercials in you area.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Bozeman Montana
    Posts
    316

    Default Re: Montana commercial apiary site laws and new beekeepers

    A hobby beekeeper can have five per family member but that's only adults so 10. And a landowner can have more or commercial site. Thing is that for me to have hives on someone else's land makes it illegal . You would have to have the landowner register them as theirs and well then you go down that road. I will try the only commercial names I know again . So far no ones returned my calls but I'll keep trying thanks

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