Traditionally small commercial beekeepers will either have their own plot of land to build their beekeeping operations, or they will enter into a land use agreement (LandShare) with local property owners and/ or farmers.
We are currently working from eight active bee yards between Revelstoke BC, and Armstrong BC. We are always interested in opportunities to increase our operations, or work with and support other beekeepers in the area in need of space to host their bee yards.
Our preference is to operate with a formal (written) land use agreement that detail responsibilities, include a seasonal timeline of beekeeping duties highlighting busy times and slow times, and all other considerations to ensure clear expectations, etc. These agreements can start with a trial period of 1-2 years for smaller bee yards, however typically range from 3-5 year terms with the option to renew, and clear guidance on how to end an agreement for either part if/ when it comes to that. Each opportunity is unique, therefore less formal agreements can also work, depending on the situation.
At this time, our focus is towards commercially increasing our operations between Revelstoke BC, and Armstrong BC. Specifically we are actively interested in LandShare opportunities that can accommodate between 8 and 40 beehives, that meet specific commercial criteria (available forage, continuous fresh water sources, accessibility, etc.).
We are active with our community of local beekeepers who are often in search of additional smaller LandShare opportunities, and would be more than happy to make a connection.
In either case, if you are a land or property owner with interest in hosting honey bees, please feel free to Contact Us to further discuss a potential fit.
This is a great and common question. Currently our main priority is increasing our commercial operations. Our management style and practices works with 4 beehives per pallet, and a minimum of 2 pallets in an apiary. The average size of a small commercial bee yard is a 10' x 10' electric fenced area.
This scale is more suitable for hobbyist beekeepers in the area that are in search of appropriate space. We would be more than happy to connect you with other beekeepers in our community that could be a good fit for you. Please feel free to Contact Us for further details.
The area needs to be easily accessible to the beekeeper. The beekeeper needs to be able to make multiple trips to the beehive for seasonal management between April and September with minimal disturbance to the property owner and neighbors.
The beehive is strongly recommended to have an solar powered electric fence to minimize attractants to bears in the area. This may be less ideal if the property owner has pets or children, without additional protection/ guarding.
The area should have a continuous fresh water source accessible to the bees in the nearby vicinity.
The area should also have a reasonable abundance of natural forage with limited competition from neighboring managed honey bee colonies.
The specific location of the beehive(s) should also take into consideration lawn/ yard maintenance.
The property owner should expect the bees to remain on the property year round.
While most honey bee hives are moderately tempered and reasonably well behaved, occasionally bee hives and some older bees (later in the season) can become aggressive. The beekeeper can requeen the hive and change the temperament to a better bred stock. Proximity to the property owner's home and other homes should be a priority consideration.
If you would like more information on the selection criteria for beehive placement, please feel free to Contact Us.
There are many styles of effective electric fences that will minimize the attractant to bears in the area, from temporary (moveable) mesh fences, to more semi-permanent with wooden fence posts and 5 strand charged wires. Commonly electric fences are solar powered and/ or battery powered. There are pros and cons to each style, and worth discussing with the beekeeper to decide on the most appropriate for your space.
Most land/ property owners are delighted to be able to contribute a portion of their space towards beekeeping to help the environment and the beekeeping community.
In addition to this, others are interested in the benefit of honey bees pollinating their home vegetable or flower gardens, and fruit trees.
It is customary for the beekeeper to offer the land/ property owner an amount of honey following each season's honey harvest relative to the size of the apiary and number of beehives (eg. 1kg-15kg)
If you have any questions about sharing a property you own with a beekeeper for an apiary, or would like to ask us about any of the bee yards we operate and/ or our practices, please let us know.