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Moving a Beehive

Sometimes you may want to move your bees to a different location - for example if you are moving house or rearranging the garden. The simple rule for moving bees is

    "You should move a beehive fewer than three feet or over three miles"

The reason for this is quite simple: Bees learn their local area by sight very accurately. If you move the hive over three feet, the flying bees will fly back to the original site, not find the hive and certainly die.

However, if you move the hive over three miles - the bees will not recognise any of the surrounding area. They will learn their new location. If you move the hive less than three miles - there is a chance that the bees will recognise their old flight area and attempt to return to their old hive position.

How to move the hive
The best time to move the hive is in winter because the bees are not flying. However, if you have to, you can move the bees in flying season and here are some simple rules:

  1. Wait till dusk when all the bees are in the colony.
  2. Block the entrance with your entrance block.
  3. Make sure that the lid and cover boards are secure.
  4. Move the hive to its new location - fewer than three feet or over three miles.
  5. Once in their new location, wait fifteen minutes for the bees to settle and then open the entrance block.
  6. Stuff some grass in the entrance to slow the bees exiting the hive. This will make them realise that there location has changed. The grass will wilt overtime and fall away from the entrance.

Customer Images


Jane, 29 October 2021

I'm moving, and I want to bring my honey bees with me. It's good to know that it's best to move them at dusk when they're in the colony. I think it'll be best for me to hire a professional honey bee relocator to keep the bees safe.

Kathryn, 5 May 2020

My neighbor has a bee hive in his backyard. He has had it for 3 years now anyway, I came home from work and noticed a small swarm of bees going in and out of a flower pot on my back porch.I have watched them for about 4 weeks. I moved them to a garden along my back fence about a two days after I found them. They are still going in and out of the flower pot at the bottom through the drain hole in the sides of the pot. We bought a beehive from Nubee . We set it up today. How do we get the bees to go into the hive? Thank you, Kathy

Haven, 22 April 2020

We have a bee hive in our garage that we would like to move to a man-made hive in our backyard. Is this possible?

Michael, 2 April 2020

I caught a swarm and originally had a hive box cover that allowed them to sneak through (I didn't have a proper cover right away). After a few days I received the cover in the mail that seals the top. Will the bees have trouble figuring out they can no longer exit through the top but instead have to go to the bottom of the hive? I'm not seeing much activity at the new entrance but not sure if that's because the small swarm is busy inside creating comb or if they're confused.

Brian, 29 January 2020

I have a hive of Italian honey bees in the floor of my work shop. I would like to move them to a hive close by. What would you suggest. It's January in Missouri and I would like to move them before spring