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Discussion Starter #1
We placed one hive of sweet girls on our friend's property, following all the rules set out by the state of Florida. The hive faces a 6' wooden fence (only side with this tall fence--rest of yard is unfenced), is clearly designated by the black plastic under it and the big bricks surrounding the edges of the plastic, AND the small fence around that. The side of the hive is set back on the property ajacent to a big wide easement that runs behind all the houses along a canal. Now, we have just been warned by the township (a "complementary citation"--are you kidding me?) that we have to move the hive by Friday (people that walk their dogs on the easement are afraid of my bees--no one has been stung) but the state is standing behind us. Our inspector is coming out on Monday (we are due anyway) to check this and our other properties out. I'm sure the state is OK with the whole thing and the township has no rights the way the laws are here in Florida. Now, here's what we are worried about--vandalism or someone spraying my sweet girls. What do you all think? At the very least, we will move them farther into the property. My hubby was worried about the sprinklers hitting the hive but we can put up deflectors. Or, should we let these big scaredy cats run me off and I take my toys and go home??? That last option does go against the grain.......urg!
 

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That's a bummer to say the least. Likely just one person complaining, too. How far off all property lines (including the easement) are the bees? Glad to hear the state is backing you up. Unless it is a HOA where restrictions are agreed to, they can't tell you to move the bees. Also a reminder that managed bees in FL are protected under livestock laws, so it is a felony for anyone to mess with your hive.

Maybe request a meeting with any concerned residents to educate them? The last thing a bee wants to do is sting...they forage miles from the hive so their yards aren't going to be crowded with bees...etc...etc...?

Edited to ask...Are your FL numbers visible on the hive? I would also ask whoever gave you the citation to come speak with the inspector.
 

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If you have complied with all the applicable rules, stand your ground.

If you are worried about vandalism, get two game cameras - a cheap one in full view and a good one well hidden.
 

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If you have complied with all the applicable rules, stand your ground.

If you are worried about vandalism, get two game cameras - a cheap one in full view and a good one well hidden.
bingo. stand your ground if you are within the law. also, i don't know that i'd meet with all concerned citizens, but i might try to find out who the (probably) lone complainer is and have a chat with them.
 

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Buy a cheap video security system and point one of the cameras at the hives from inside a window. Put a nice sign on the hives that say "Smile your on camera". Solved the problem with people stealing my scuppernongs. If just the camera and the sign dont stop any vandalism you will be able to prove who did it to the inspector and a judge.
 

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Buy a cheap video security system and point one of the cameras at the hives from inside a window. Put a nice sign on the hives that say "Smile your on camera". Solved the problem with people stealing my scuppernongs. If just the camera and the sign dont stop any vandalism you will be able to prove who did it to the inspector and a judge.
Had to google what a scuppernong is... I'm glad to live in a part of the country where this kind of stuff isn't terribly common... people stealing fruit and complaining to "authorities" on neighborly disputes.

So far as the citation... I'd imagine the person who wrote it and the person who complained may be one-in-the-same. My guess is they are "allergic". So far nearly everyone I've talked to is "allergic" to bees. When I ask them to describe their reaction it's basically a bad mosquito bite.
 

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While it seems the law is on your side, to me, putting a hive 6 ft from a fence, facing it, with the public using the other side of the fence, is asking for trouble. Because most people in theory, want to help bees. But, there is that small % of people who are totally psychotic to bees & placing a hive in that manner means there is good odds such a person will cross your path.

It just takes one person to complain, and if they can tell a good story, put on a good act, the powers that be have little choice in todays safety obsessed society, to act, as they have.

The fact you suspect vandalism may ensue, shows you are aware of strong feelings on the part of at least one member of the public.

Me, regardless of the law, I would move the bees somewhere on your property more out of sight out of mind, although now, that is going to be more difficult since complaints and proceedings have already been initiated.

See it this way. Some people are weak minded, and see bees as nothing more than stinging things, they remember being stung as a child, being chased while screaming, and how traumatic that was for them, they feel about the bees like you would feel walking past a fence with an aggressive dog, and you are scared the dog might leap the fence and get you. The dog owner may know better it's his pet. But to you who do not understand that dog, it's a lot more scary.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well, I think it's all going to work out. I will know for sure Monday. My inspector called me today and the town's code enforcement guy is going to be there when we do the inspection on Monday. We will move the hive (wasn't my choice spot in the first place anyway--that's what I get for giving in, but ya got to pick your battles) because FPL will be changing out a power pole close to the hive this summer. Yesterday, I bought a sign that said, "Caution under camera surveillance" and push pinned it to my hive just because.... The homeowner is a elderly widow that doesn't like being pushed around. She is clear headed and is a busy, busy active lady. No way she was going to let them push us into removing the hive. The vast majoriity of people I meet are very supportive of me and keekeepers in general. Thanks for the support and great advise. I will let you know what happens on Monday.
 

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Post NO TRESPASSING signs along the entire back of the property toward the easement. That way if someone is found on the property that doesn't belong you can put them in jail for the night. Goes a long way to fight back a little. Don't let them scare you out. People like those idiots are the entire problem with keeping bees now. They all think that they are "ALLERGIC" to bee stings. WHIMPS without a brain is what they are. They need an education on bees.. IMO
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Post NO TRESPASSING signs along the entire back of the property toward the easement.
Yes, I have ordered signs but they have not arrived yet. Should be here anytime. Hopefully the bees and the signs will keep her gorgeous and yummy bananas being stolen off the tree. They don't take one or two, they cut the whole hand of about 50 to 70 bananas. She uses them to make banana bread for gifts as she is on a fixed income. Stealing from a elderly widow. Nice, huh?
 

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That's just pathetic of People to steal fruit from somoene's yard. Can't or won't spend the time to grow their own, instead steal if from an elderly woman.. Gotta love this world.. Here where I live, that kinda crap would get a person into some real pain.. WV justice system of the "Good Ole Boys" lol.. Around here they believe in hunting down theives and putting a hurt on them.. lol
 

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I like Shinbones idea, make sure the hidden one is good quality. But, if it were me, I'd move my hive, can't tell what I'd do if i caught someone vandalizing my colony.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Well, my state inspector (a real sweetheart) was here yesterday to check out the situation with this township and our hive. Short story, it's all good. We did move the hive farther into the property and behind the banana trees (where I wanted it in the first place, dear hubby :rolleyes:) and power company can change the pole without being scared of my bees. Hopefully, the dog walkers will get over it - keep them on a leash or take responsibility for what happens if they stick their noses in the hive entrance. She didn't inspect any of our hives because the weather was ugly and windy so she will be back next week to check to our 3 yards. Township is cool. Turns out (from where we can't figure out???) the township was under the impression that the homeowner, our sweet elderly widow that offered bee space to us, was under pressure from us to use her propery for our bees and we were taking advantage. What? Are you kidding me? We walked away so the inspector could question her privately. Geez! How do these rumors start? All is good, plus we posted "Caution Do Not Enter Bees" and "Cameras in Use" signs in front of the banana trees to CYA. Hopefully, signs will keep those banana stealing jerks out of her yard, too. So, it was all a tempest in a teapot......
 
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