Spring as Sprung
Hawksview had an amazing harvest last year but we have officially ran out of honey...thank you to all our customers who have supported us. We hope to have our first spin in late June, we will let you know as soon we are back in stock.
We have had a lot of new interest in beekeeping this year, and thought this article might help. With, more and more people getting into backyard bees, there are many reasons, pollination, the 'gold' (honey), bees wax, they are pretty independent, and just because they are amazing creatures.
Being a good beekeeping neighbor is something all backyard beekeepers should be concerned about. You do not want to irritate any of our neighbors with our bees so we try to be respectful and thoughtful of our neighbors by following these good beekeeping practices:
1. Know your local laws regarding backyard beekeeping. Usually there are not any ordinances or laws that strictly prohibit backyard beekeepers, but there are usually some that restrict beekeeping practices. This could include how many hives can be on your property or how far away they need to be from neighboring properties. All beekeepers should register their hive, Honeybee Registration Form - Under the Bees Act of Ontario (gov.on.ca) Here is the link for Ontario.
2. Always have water available for your bees. Like all of us, bees need water to survive. In the summer a bee colony can use a quart or more of water a day. Bees are super resourceful so if you don’t provide water or are gone for a few weeks and your water source runs dry, they’ll find water elsewhere. The problem with that is that your neighbor’s kiddie pool may become their favorite watering hole. And most neighbors don’t take too kindly to a bunch of bees trying to swim with their children. But it’s also not good for the bees as most pools are treated with chemicals and most do not have landing pads floating around where bees can drink and rest safely.
3. Position your hive opening away from your neighbor’s homes. Your bees will be coming and going all day long and it’s best to have them leaving their hive and flying toward your home and not your neighbor’s home. Backyard beekeepers are responsible for keeping the bees from being a problem for neighbors, and no one wants to have bees buzzing by their faces whenever they go outside.
4. Use fences, screens or hedges to alter their flight pattern. Bees keep a flight pattern when leaving and returning to their hive. And that flight pattern can be altered with a little planning on your part. Backyard beekeepers can build a fence or screen or plant a hedge near the front of the hive so the bees are forced to fly high and steep when taking off and landing. This will help them fly overhead sooner.
5. Be helpful. There are people who legitimately are allergic to bees. But even if none of your neighbors are allergic they might still be concerned about honey bee farming so close to their property. Most of the time their concerns are easy to resolve if you just take the time to educate them on what you are doing and why the bees are acting a certain way. We have a Starting Up a New Hive Facebook Group - Starting up a new hive | Facebook
6. Encourage your neighbors to feed the bees. Most neighbors will be excited or, at least, intrigued by you keeping bees and will ask what they can do to help. Planting plants that attract bees is a great way for them to be a part of what you’re doing and they’ll have a good harvest because of the bees. It’s a win-win situation.
7. Share your harvest. People are most excited about things they benefit from, so every so often share a small jar of your honey with your closest neighbors. When a backyard beekeeper brings over a jar of honey it will put a smile on even the most concerned neighbor’s face.
Let us know if you have any questions or need any supplies to get your hive up and going. We are here to help you.
Happy Beekeeping :)
519-995-7233 - The Wright Bee Team