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where to place hive

 
Kelly Smitherson
Posts: 46
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I ordered my first package of bees, Italians.
We get them in April

So, where to place the hive on our property.
Next year they will go on our south hill, right in the sun, this is where our orchard will be, it will be great... but THIS year, that is where the market pigs will be starting, and have a lot of work to do there this year. I do not want the hive where the pigs will be moving, as I am 100% certain the pigs will tear apart a hive even if I put a fence around it, I doubt I could keep the pigs back from the hive if they found it -- so NO south hill this year

so I have a northeast lawn up by the gate, but my neighbors are already complaining about me getting bees - and they could see the hives from our gate if I placed them up here. Also, my four young children often play forts in the trees around this yard.

Then I have an old horse arena out in the southwest pasture, there are blackberries galore. I could put a back up electric fence around the arena fence to keep the kune kune pigs out, and the cows and goats and dogs and poultry etc etc - but... on the outside of the arena is pasture that all those critters will be using in rotation- how much will that bother the bees to have livestock in their bee line?

There are a few other areas too- but ... I want them to have sun, I want them to be out of the way, meaning out of a heavy traffic area- and like I said, SAFE from all our other critters and idiot people too
 
tel jetson
steward
Posts: 3356
Location: woodland, washington
75
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good question to ask before the bees arrive. ideally, they would be in the sun all day in the winter, but in the shade in the middle of the day during summer. they would also be protected from wind and rain and be placed at least 18 inches above the ground to avoid ground-level moisture. I prefer closer to three feet up.

a place that might come close to that ideal: under an eave on the south side of a building with a deciduous tree located to the south.

what style of hive are you using? most Warré roofs are designed to handle midday heat pretty well, so summer sun isn't a huge problem. you could use similar principles to design a new roof if you're using a Lang or horizontal top bar hive. the Warré quilt helps a lot, too, which can also be retrofit to other styles of hive. full sun all year is certainly better than deep shade all year, but comb collapse and brood death are real possibilities if a hive gets too hot.

I've got goats in close proximity to my bees. they all get along fine. an electric fence keeps the goats from knocking the hives over. I actually built a permanent shed for the hives, but that really isn't necessary. it does help the bees, but whether something like that is worth the extra expense is totally up to you. it could, however, solve the pig problem by raising your hive up out of reach of your pigs.
 
Kelly Smitherson
Posts: 46
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I am glad you mentioned the shed, I was thinking about that too, with as much rain as we get out here in the Puget Sound, I was thinking it might be a good idea. Do you have pictures of your shed and set up?

 
tel jetson
steward
Posts: 3356
Location: woodland, washington
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as requested.

sorry it's sideways. that photo is looking east.
image.jpg
[Thumbnail for image.jpg]
 
Devon Olsen
Posts: 1066
Location: SE Wyoming -zone 4
7
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somewhere you can access but isnt too heavily traveled, dont need to access the hive too often, just occasssionally

and for strategic purposes, if that matters to you, somewhere within your line of sight from home, though adjacent to places that are out of sight

someone in your blind spot and you know it but cant see to get at em or deter em?
shoot a beehive right next to em and flush em out with thousands of really pissed off bees!

also shed idea is good imo because even without the benefits for the bees directly (which shouldnt be ignored) it gives you an area that you can use for rainwater catchment, storing said water in a cistern for watering adjacent livestock such as chickens or goats or whatever, for watering the bees themselves by occassionally filling a bird bath such as shown in pauls video on bee reverence or something like that
and when thats full or just for this purpose, use it as an extra runoff area for feeding a close pond or swale during rains

and for CERTAIN tools you may be able to use it as an extra storage area, or a place to hang things to dry depending on the thing you are drying and your climate - some crops are best when dried in high humidity while a lot of seeds are best dried in low humidity
 
Jen Shrock
pollinator
Posts: 363
Location: NW Pennsylvania Zone 5B bordering on Zone 6
8
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If you are just placing it for one year elsewhere and then will place in it's permanent location next year, what about on a roof top, say the one on the horse arena you mentioned? It would be up and out of the way of people and animals and then this fall, when the pigs are done doing their work, you could move it to it's permanent location.
 
Kelly Smitherson
Posts: 46
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Thank you for all the suggestions!

My neighbor is being pretty dramatic about me getting bees, already ordering bee traps to line her place with- so I think I am going with the far horse arena area-- thank you! Than kyou !

I really like the shed!! I will show pics to DH - thank you!
 
La Welker
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So when you all are talking about bees not liking the wind, how much wind is okay and when is it too much? I live near The Dalles, Oregon (columbia gorge) and the wind does blow sometimes. Do you think the bees would hang around?
 
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