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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Arlee MT USA
    Posts
    548

    Default When to worry about robbing? and how close should I space hives?

    This is my first year with more than one hive. I'm starting fresh with four packages that are going to be installed at the same time (My last hive was destroyed by bears). I'm wondering if I need to worry about my hives robbing from each other right away or if this is something that only happens after they have some honey stores?

    On a related note how close can I space my hives to each other and should I paint them different colors or otherwise mark them to make it easier for the bees to find their proper hives?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Brown County, IN
    Posts
    2,034

    Default Re: When to worry about robbing? and how close should I space hives?

    Robbing isn't likely to be an issue. Usually stronger hives rob weaker hives, and with four packages they're about equal. Depending on how your feeding, if, for example, one has a leaky feeder, that could create problems.

    The hives can be as close as you want them. Side by side colonies will have some drifting of bees, but usually nothing to worry about. Commercial beekeepers have them all flush together on pallets. If you want to paint them differently or mark them in some way, it's your choice.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Lake County Ill
    Posts
    445

    Default Re: When to worry about robbing? and how close should I space hives?

    I started this year with 5 packages and I have had no issue with robbing. They are all in the same situation and have both sugar water and patties and I have used the entrance reducers to the smallest size.My hives all face the same way and are about 3- 4 feet apart. I was recently advised that I should turn each hive with a slightly different entrance direction but I think the hive orientation id fine. If you look at some of the commercial keepers they have hives stacked on pallets. Good Luck

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Orient, ohio USA
    Posts
    149

    Default Re: When to worry about robbing? and how close should I space hives?

    From what I understand, it is a good idea to put an entrance reducre on new packages while they get established so they have a smaller area to defend

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