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going rate?

Does anyone know the going rate (in honey) for having someone elses hives on your land?  We have been approached to house 3 hives on our land to take advantage of the gorse and heather season amoungst others but wonder what the appropriate exchange rate is - a percentage of honey taken from the hive maybe?  if so how much?

If you are growing anything that requires bee/insect pollination then you should be paying the beekeeper. If the hives are located to only take advantage of the local wild and meadow flowers, Heather and gorse then a couple of jars of honey and 500g of wax from each hive would be a very fair exchange.

The going rate is a jar of honey per hive per year.

blinking heck, I don't think I'll bother then as we will have to fence an area off for them to protect them from the stags and give the bee keeper a lift when they want to visit on the quad bike and transport their gear with the trailer - I'll spend more on petrol, time and fencing than its worth!!!!  this person will be selling her honey in her local shop for £6 per 1lb jar

debbie wrote:
 this person will be selling her honey in her local shop for £6 per 1lb jar

Have you considered how much it is going to cost her to produce that honey?    She'll be lucky to clear £1.25 to £1.50 per jar

well, I think she may need to be finding somewhere else to keep them because she is intending to visit twice a week and I am not running her around on the quad twice a week for a year (even setting aaside the fencing etc) for £18 worth of honey - the bees will not be helping us polonate anything in particular she wants them here because of the gorse and the heather.  She even wants to bring visitors to visit her hives.  I don't think her overheads will be that high as all the equipment (except the hives - she is making those herself) is being borrowed from aother beekeeping friend of hers who runs the local bee club. My friend in Surrey pays 10% of his honey yield to site his hives.

I made my hives for free............ reclaimed pallet wood and reclaimed nails.

So far I have only one super for each hive, but both hives have £45 worth of commercially made frames and foundation in them, plus queen excluders and spacers etc. I reckon each hive has cost me £75.00 to make and install. Then I have a veil, smoker, hive tool and a few other bits & bobs that have cost me £42.00. I have made 2 metre high X 2 metre wide steel frames (fence) to go around each hive and have covered them with green builders mesh to protect the hives from animals and people, and to force the bees up as they leave the hive, so that is 8 panels at £16.00 each ......... that is the cost materials and paint only, and none of my labour has been counted.

I have with the help of my beekeeping friend and mentor captured two colonies of bees......... so they have cost me nothing. My hives are currently located in two localish orchards and I am being paid £1 per day per hive so that is an income of £14.00 per week but for only 4 weeks, and the hives are 15 miles away 12 miles apart (42 mile loop), and each hive requires about 45 minutes of maintenance per week, so that is my diesel and wear & tear covered but not my time. I think my annual BBKA subscription and Public liability insurance cost me £45.00, then add into all that the cost of harvesting, processing and jarring of any honey I may have this year, and I still reckon I am going to make a loss of about £3 per week or £150 overall this year......  and I'm doing it on the cheapy cheap.

These hives will be 4 miles from where she lives and she passes the bottom of my lane on a regular basis.  She must know her costings but as I said - from my point of view at 1 jar per hive its not worth my while - in fact it will cost me money and inconvenience.  I'll let you know what she comes up with

Another thing to think about is liability - who would be responsible if she brings visitors onto your land?
Personally, I think she is at it - she sounds like she is going to be more of an inconvenience.
Do you really want to be bothered?
I allowed a new beekeeper to site her hive on my land 2 years ago - she hardly ever visited and when her colony had problems she resented my well meant advice.  When the bee inspector took a look she was not pleased at what she found.
We were pleased when she moved (and moved her bees), and I wouldnt do it again.

At the very least your person should have offered to pay for and erect the fencing......

I know it is here but we hade a friend put 6 hives on here, he did electric fence around them off our main fence, came and looked after them and we got honey from him, as we are are keen on bees and have fruit trees also clover in pasture etc it was great for us.

Dont get me wrong, Im all for landowners and big gardens offering space for bees.  The bees themselves will do a lot of good and arnt a hassle.  Its just some beekeepers that are the issue, and I think taking a bit of time to suss them out as to their experience etc is important.

Debbie is offering a place for the hives, but is also going to have to fence an area off for them, AND convey the keeper to them TWICE weekly?

Im sure Debbie has a whole string of things she could be doing rather than ferrying this person and having the expense and chore of fencing.
All that hassle for a jar of honey?

(Im selling honey for £4.50 a jar - £6 is a bit steep)

its in her gift shop in a very touristy area hence the price and if its got the honey combe in it its £6.50; 1/2 lb £4.50; 1/4 lb £3.50 Honey combe in small white plastic container £4.50.  At the moment she buys her honey in so now wants to produce her own - she does love the bees though.  Rent hasn't yet been discussed so I'll see what she says. to be honest the only thing we will get out of it is the honey so if its not worth while I won't do it

Definitely not worth the hassle. If they site their hives on your land you're doing the favour so they need to be of no inconvenience to you at all. If you were a commercial orchard or suchlike it would be different but then you'd probably be in touch with a beekeeper who does it as a job and has a lot of hives and who would know the score.

Hi Debbie, sorry I'm a bit late replying to your question. The pound of honey per hive per year is what's generally regarded as the 'traditional' rent, for an amateur beekeeper to put a hive or two on a bit of scrub land on someone else's property, but maintenance and upkeep is definitely down to the beekeeper.

My local association rents the corner of a field from a local smallholder, we pay £450 per year for an area big enough for six hives although that does include use of the meeting rooms they have and a small equipment shed in the farmyard. We do all our own maintenance and pay for any fencing required and the labour to put it up.

As an observation though, I can't see why the beekeeper wants to put the hive in one of your fields. Presumably it shares a boundary with the area of gorse and heather they'e interested in but unless your farm is situated in the middle of the gorse and heather area and that is all that grows in your local area then the bees will range outside of the target fields anyway. It would be just as easy to put the hives in the corner of your farmyard, if you have space, then she can access them as she likes and not need your help.

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