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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    raleigh, NC
    Posts
    106

    Default Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    so another of my neighbors was complaining that they got stung on their property, by my bees.
    through my filter it did sound like bees; it sounded like it was a fresh swarm making an initial descent; from my experience as the swarms are first figuring where they are going they are not necessarily friendly, so I am convinced about stinging and aplis mellifera.
    Now when my hives swarm; the initial descent tends to be 10 to 25 feet from the hives on my leland cypress trees. I've seen them go maybe 30 feet from the hive up high in an oak tree.
    Where the stinging was described was over 100 feet from my hives, but less than 150 feet; where there were lots of nice trees for them to settle on between me and where the swarm was described. I had some empty nucs in the driveway for repair that the neighbors were trying to blame. I cut my hives down pretty severely in the spring; and they all swarmed already; so a July swarm from my hives is an exceedingly rare event (not zero, but rare). I look for new swarms every morning when I get up and every morning when I leave in the usual spots to find them; and there was nothing

    Do we think they were my bees or a feral hive?
    If there is a feral hive nearby I would like to find it to get the bees.
    Any advice?

    Any other words of advice about being a responsible beekeeper?

    I have already been migrating things away from my house to a beeyard; but the neighbors are not going to be happy without 100% removal. I realize all of these things; but I want to be responsible. All of my hives are at least 50 to 75 feet from my property lines; I have multiple water sources on the property; and I feed the bees during the mid-summer dearth so they are not bothering the neighbors, I go through the hives frequently to reduce the chances of swarming.

    There is about 20 acres of woodland behind my house; the stinging occured east of the hives; when I've seen swarms leave; they usually go west,

    I never want to say not me; but when people know you have them; you always get blamed. I moved some nucs that were making queens to a new yard and I was getting calls about my bees swarming, and when I said all the bees were still there; and there was no queen so the swarm couldn't have come from me; I still got skeptical looks.

    well advice is appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Worcester County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    3,424

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    If you are casting swarms with the regularity that it sounds, I think you will have problems with neighbors one way or another.

    deknow
    The irony is free. It's the sarcasm you are paying for....ironically.
    -Felicity Jones in "Chalet Girl"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    raleigh, NC
    Posts
    106

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    I would not say any regularity; I would say that during the normal swarm season April and May; I get swarms which appears to be normal; after May 15th; I have only observed maybe one swarm. the neighbors are going to complain just because there are bees feeding on their weeds. I am cutting back; but I don't see bringing it down to zero at home.

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    If you are casting swarms with the regularity that it sounds, I think you will have problems with neighbors one way or another.

    deknow

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Walker, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    774

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    Personally, if I were keeping hives in a neighborhood instead of on a farm, I'd feel obliged to do my best to avoid allowing my hives to swarm. There are a bunch of techniques for this and any good beekeeping book should give lots of explanations of what to do to help avoid swarming for those of us who don't know how. Obviously not all swarms CAN be prevented, but the majority can IF the beek is paying attention and taking the proper steps to avoid allowing swarm conditions to develop. Keeping bees in the city does impose the extra responsibility to do one's best to avoid swarming for the sake of neighborhood peace and good will.

    JMO


    Rusty
    Rusty Hills Farm -- home of AQHA A Rusty Zipper & Rusty's Bees ( LC and T)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    2,059

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    Huh... bees that sting. Who would of thunk it? lol

    There are several methods to decrease (not prevent) swarming as several have stated earlier. I have found however, that if the proper information is relayed in a friendly manner to the affected neighbors, they are willing to take a few stings for the greater good.
    A jar of local honey may help sweeten up the neighbor as well.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Chandler, IN
    Posts
    21

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    I believe you would get blamed even if you didn't have a active hive. A lot of people in the cities are just going to blame beek's no matter what for them getting stung. Try to tone it down if possible ( give them some honey) and remember "you can't fix stupid".

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Oshawa, Ontario
    Posts
    198

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    You have to control the swarms, especially in town.
    Even if bees are allowed in town, they could still probably come after you with a nuisance complaint, or you could find a new bylaw enacted with your name on it.
    Gotta keep a low profile, and a cloud of 20000 bees ain't doing that.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    raleigh, NC
    Posts
    106

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    I take all of the proper steps to avoid swarming; the only thing I am not doing is putting in the slat by brushy mountain the keeps the queen from escaping. I have nine other hives at my other yard from the splits I made this spring. I am not yet convinced the swarm came from me; bee strength seems about the same; I'll be able to get a better read after tomorrow.

    Frankly complaining about bees flying around not a problem; swarm landing on somebody elses land a big problem

    The neighbors did point at empty boxes that I was repairing from other yards.

    First rule is to blame yourself first; but there are a lot of other beekeepers within my flight range; and a forest behind my house.
    If there are feral hives I want to find them so I can get the bees and move them to my other yard.

    For the most part I have been scared that my hives have gotten weak rather then swarm strength at the home yard probably due to the wet weather and varroa.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Kingsville, OH
    Posts
    965

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    Im not a good neighbor, so I live in the country. But I know from experience when I lived in the city that people ***** about anything and everything. I mowed the lawn to early, I didn't mow often enough. My Bar B Q smoked on them..... Glad I moved.
    Sounds to me your neighbors are like my old ones. Feral bees may have swarmed, but you will get the blame.
    Find a farm and get out of the nightmare.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    raleigh, NC
    Posts
    106

    Default Re: Bee-Swarm-Neighobors

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Franklin View Post
    Im not a good neighbor, so I live in the country. But I know from experience when I lived in the city that people ***** about anything and everything. I mowed the lawn to early, I didn't mow often enough. My Bar B Q smoked on them..... Glad I moved.
    Sounds to me your neighbors are like my old ones. Feral bees may have swarmed, but you will get the blame.
    Find a farm and get out of the nightmare.
    this is where the story ends; my immediate neighbors are actually good people; they came over today and said "we listened to you" and they found the yellow jacket nest that was the offending "swarm" we like the bees....

    unfortunately, I moved a somewhat schmucked hive today that I know I could have saved; if I left it in its place.
    it was schmucked because they built comb under the hive and the queen was down laying underneath the hive; hive got robbed; hive beetles.

    Do I or do I not build the six foot high fence around the beeyard?

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