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Beekeeping in bear country

3065 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  justgojumpit
Hi I live in Northern NJ, which is known for its black bear population. I like to begin beekeeping but I am concern of the bear being a nuisance. I was wondering how to other people manage the bear problem while beekeeping. Thanks.

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Hi Roberto, welcome to the forums. I've never had to deal with bears myself but as far as I know there are a couple way's to deal with it. The best would probably be an electric fence, if you go that route run at least 3 lines from 12 inches off the ground up to 48 inches. That will keep them from going under. Some honey slathered on a tin pie plate attached to one of the hot lines will give that bear a new outlook on life when he tries to lick!

The other method would be keeping your hives high off the ground maybe an outbuilding rooftop, has to be something that black bear can't climb though.

Hope that helps...
roberto487 said:
...I was wondering how to other people manage the bear problem while beekeeping. Thanks.

Very good question, and sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words:

What specific questions do you have about fence useage?
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Welcome to the forums 1of6, that's a nice looking setup you have there ;)
Thank you. As you can see there's a lot of old and homemade equipment here. I got hit by bears twice (long story) in two different locations, so I made sure that I did what I could at this site. The site pictured has 9 hives in it this fall, and I have 2 hives here at my home location in town. I'm always eager to follow the bear fence converstations to see what approaches others take and what they show that will allow me to improve on my own setup. I don't bait yet though. I'm not sold yet, but I do understand the reasoning.

I was really excited to run across this site and I am eager to listen in on the conversations that take place on these forums. I'd also be interesting seeing others' hive and yard setups.

Since the bears have so much hair, they do not really get much of a shock. The thing that really gets them is when they get zapped on the nose by a really HOT fence while inspecting the peanut butter baits that you have attached to the hot wires. That really does it! I had my bees in upstate new york for a while, and one encounter with a bear taught me not to mess around!

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