Re: How many hives is too many hives?
Jim, You have added production to the issue. The OP was more about survival than production. Bees can afford to fly a lot further in order to survive even though hit means lower to no production.
You point has brought a question to my mind. Part of this I have heard from other threads. Bees will tend to prefer certain sources over others. Including traveling further passing up other sources in favor of others. You set a limit of a mile and a half for bees to be able to produce excess honey. Other are indicating that bees will travel as much as 6 to 7 miles. All together I wonder how often bees will forage a source that falls outside that productive limit?
Significant Minority vs Insignificant Majority, 20% of causes produce 80% of the effects.