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Moving a Hive

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    Max Morgan

    I need to move a hive about 10′ from it’s current location. What’s the best way to do this? I can remember reading once no more than 3′ at a time or no less than 3 miles. Is this accurate? If I move it in 3′ increments, how long of a delay between incremental moves until I reach the final location?


    I’ve moved hives to new locations in my yard like this:
    Just before sunset, prepare
    IF there are bees on the landing board, smoke them into the hive.
    close the entrance with a piece of folded metal screen (like from a screen door)
    move the hive to the new location
    leave the screen in place
    put a bunch of grass or leaves in front of the entrance (in front of the screen)
    the next morning
    slide the screen out of the entrance a little
    leave the grass etc. in place

    The bees seem to re-orient and find their way back to their new home

    Max Morgan

    David – Thanks for taking the time to reply. What is the purpose of the grass in front of the screen?

    susan rudnicki

    When moving a existing hive to a new location, it helps the bees re-orient to the new site (set their “GPS”) by not barreling out of the entrance in the usual manner, but having to push a little through a pile of leaves or detritus, etc. placed in the doorway. It slows them down, making them take more careful notice of the different site. The reduced entrance ( as mentioned with the folded screen) helps control traffic flow, too. Reduced entrances are helpful to have always in place as the guards can more effectively patrol for invaders like hive moth or robbers. Bees in nature often select a very small entrance hole as their preference, for this very reason. The full length hive body entrances typical of Lang set-ups are often much bigger than helpful

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