Feature Article

Q&A: Ideal distance between hives?

Q: Is there an ideal distance between hives (to avoid mites or other issues)?

A: I think I answered this in a practical sort of way at the meeting but would like to add that research indicates that drifting bees promote the spread of Varroa mites.  When bees are placed in a straight line such as hive stands holding several hives, the hives on the ends seem to be better honey producers.  The amount of these hives collecting drifting bees is obvious.  The hives in the middle do not seem to collect as many drifting bees.  Facing hives in different directions may be somewhat of a help against drifting bees.  Distance apart from other hives definitely would make a difference in the drifting problem.  The greater the distance the less drifting from hive to hive.

-Dana Stahlman