Opinions wanted!

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by PerryBee, Mar 31, 2013.

  1. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Here's the set-up.
    I got a call from a landowner near me, he's got a nice farm with apples, squash, pumpkins, and a U-pick raspberry field.
    There were 7 hives placed on this property by a keep last year that never came and picked them up. The landowner has called the keep who has apparently lost all interest in keeping, and a follow up call to the keeps father confirmed that the hives have been abandoned.
    The owner called me to come take a look which I agreed to do. I brought along an extra suit and explained to the landowner every thing I was seeing.
    4 are alive 3, are dead. All hives consist of double deeps with hive top feeders. There was one honey super laying on the ground.
    Upon opening the hives I found Apivar strips in all of them from last year. :ranting:
    He and his wife are somewhat interested in beekeeping and think at some future time one or the other may take a course. He asked me if I was interested in taking the honey. I explained that there was little if any honey in the brood chambers at this point, and that everything in there was contaminated anyway.
    I believe his biggest interest is in the pollination the hives provide. I told him that the only interest I really had was in the bees themselves.
    I think he may be thinking I would swap caring for the bees for any honey harvest, but at this point I have not yet developed a market substantial enough. Besides, if I want to increase my honey crop, I can do it easily enough with expansion of my own hives. Caring for someone else's hives can be expensive if there are problems. I also told him I will never be interested in purchasing honey from anyone and selling it under my name, not gonna happen.
    I told him to discuss things over with his wife and that we may find some sort of beneficial arrangement to satisfy us all.
    I was leaning towards me assuming ownership of the 4 living hives, allowing them to clean, scrape, paint, the deadouts, and then accompany me when I work the 4 hives and learn as they go. I would then split and fill "their" 3 hives. I would agree to keep hives there at all times for pollination until they either became proficient at it themselves, or for a set number of years.
    He seems like a really nice guy, and they have a great property for another bee yard that I could use.

    What say you? Any ideas? Am I being to greedy, or too easy?
     
  2. Buzzen

    Buzzen Member

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    How close is this farm to you? Seems reasonable to me if there wasn't a bunch of travel time involved. Especially if you were looking to expand your own operation and could use his other property for an outyard. Good Luck!
     

  3. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    This farm is a 5 minute drive from home, and is about a mile from one of my other yards. It would overlap a bit, but would fit in nicely with the "route" I take going from yard to yard. Do you mean reasonable as in my idea, or theirs? :lol:
     
  4. ibeelearning

    ibeelearning Member

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    I think the situation is fraught with potential for misunderstanding.
     
  5. Buzzen

    Buzzen Member

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    reasonable as in YOUR idea.
     
  6. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Type up a clear concise contract which limits liability for you (what if things go wrong and AFB becomes an issue in a hive you "sold" him, etc) but states what you just said, see if he signs it. Contract means 2 people agree, you and him. Limits liability and expense on both, clearly defines how future assets and growth will be divided.
     
  7. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    The owner of the abandoned hives has the honey supers to go with the hives along with other beekeeping equipment. contact him directly find out what he has and offer him a bit of cash for the whole works. then the hives and every thing is yours. 7 hives in an yard that he will be spraying his apple trees in is not an attractive out yard so move hives in foe apple pollination and back out and in again for the raspberry and charge for the service of pollination.
    How many acres of apple trees and raspberry dose he have?
     
  8. jb63

    jb63 New Member

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    I like your idea Perry, but Aphis has a good point about the spraying.Ask the farmer if he has a small trailer you can set them on.Then tow them away when it's time to spray.
     
  9. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I like jb63's idea even better. But truth be told, you don't know what the deal was between the farmer and the beekeeper. I'd be talking to the beekeeper to confirm the facts of the matter.
     
  10. Marbees

    Marbees Member

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    I would go as ApisBees suggested.
     
  11. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    If some one buys his other equipment from him and he tell them he has hives at .... could open a hole can of HE said, She said, they weren't his to give away. If he is willing to abandon the equipment he most likely wont want much for it.
     
  12. Slowmodem

    Slowmodem New Member

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    Explain the monitary worth of the bees and equipment. Tell them to get Beekeeping for Dummies. Perhaps you could mentor them and there would be another beekeeper in the area. If they're not interested, offer them $100 for the whole works and move them to your other yard for a while (in case of problems with the former owner). Once you get the hives built back up, you could consider moving some of the hives back, if you need another bee yard.

    If you have bees within a mile of this place, your bees are already working the land.

    Just my $0.02 (not sure of the Canadian equivalent or the exchange rate). :)
     
  13. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    Greg haven't you heard in Canada we got rid of the penny, it cost more than 1 cent to produce. We now round up and found down, so sorry to have to tell you your 2 cents are worth nothing but your 3 cents are worth a nickle now. Only in Canada.
    I do appreciate your input and thoughts the equiptment is not worth a whole lot and Perry could use his time more wisely looking after his own hives than for some one that is looling for the benifits of having hives but not the commitment.
     
  14. Bsweet

    Bsweet Member

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    Do it your way Perry. Take the 4 live ones to YOUR outyard and train/teach them (the farmer and wife)there and let them have their hives at the farm if they decide to have bees. Jim
     
  15. pistolpete

    pistolpete New Member

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    If you want another out yard, then offer them 10% of the harvest in return for having your bees there and pollination at no charge. If you don't need another yard, then offer them $300 for the 4 hives and walk away with the bees and no future obligations
     
  16. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    multiple owners of the same hives is always a problem waiting to happen. I would guess given your description that a 'seasonal time constraint' might mean there is no excess capacity to care for these hives by the land owner. a problem has been created in that the owner has likely gotten FREE pollination in the past and he want to maintain the SLAVE LABOR contract he is now working under.

    buy the hives outright move them and then if things work out charge the land owner a reasonable charge for pollination.

    everyone (I am not excluding myself here) wants there cake and to eat it also... bee keepers have set a bad historical president by working for SLAVE LABOR rates and the massa' doesn't understand when we want to renegotiate the contract.
     
  17. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    I'm with Tec on this one. could not have said it better. The hives although neglected are owned by the beekeeper.
     
  18. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    ditto what tec said perry,
    been there done that. they want free pollination, and they say they want to learn and when they realize what it takes.....or maybe they already know and that's why they called you the beekeeper to fix it for them.

    and i wouldn't take over someone's neglected abandoned hives unless i had a receipt in my hand signed by the owner that says i paid for what there was of them.
     
  19. jb63

    jb63 New Member

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    Well Perry you've opened a Pandora's bee box.The two questions are pollination and ownership.Sense they are abandoned and the farmer claims them they are his problem.If he wants to give them to you have him write you a bill of sales.If he doesn't want to pay for pollination ask what he has to trade.I also agree with Tec. on defined ownership and Free apprenticeship program.
     
  20. Lburou

    Lburou Member

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    My view is that you would do well to buy the hives from the beekeeper, remove them to your nearby yard and assure the landowner that there is enough overlap in bee coverage during the time it takes to bring the colonies back to speed. Bring them to his 'great property' when they are healthy. Sell them to him if he wants them. The beekeeper may have lots of cheap equipment, so pick that up too because you never have too much trading stock. :)