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Petitioning Planning Commission Ashland City Council

City of Ashland: Adopt a Bee-Friendly Ordinance


Please help us in creating a beekeeper and honey bee friendly environment in Ashland, Oregon. A bee-friendly ordinance will support our local honey bee populations, sustainable urban food systems, and local food security.

Letter to
Planning Commission Ashland City Council
I am in full support of the proposed amendment to the current ordinance pertaining to keeping bees in Ashland City limits.

As it stands, the code states: No person shall keep or maintain a bee hive, bees, apiary, comb, or container of any kind or character wherein bees are hived, within one hundred fifty (150) feet of another dwelling or within one hundred fifty (150) feet of a street or sidewalk.

This legislation is nonsensical due to the fact that a honey bee's flight range is up to 25 square miles, and the bees disperse to the surrounding millage at approximately four feet from the hive. The below proposed legislation is common sense policy which considers beekeepers and neighbors of Ashlanders.

Proposed amendment to 9.08.040 D:

The keeping or maintaining of bees, bee colonies, bee hives, combs, or containers of any kind or character wherein bees are hived is subject to the following:

1. No more than three (3) bee colonies shall be kept or maintained on properties less than one acre in size.

2. No more than five (5) bee colonies shall be kept or maintained on properties greater than one acre in size.

3. Bee colonies shall be kept in hives with removable frames, which shall be kept in sound and usable condition.

4. For each colony permitted to be maintained under this ordinance, there may also be maintained upon the same property, one nucleus colony in a hive structure not to exceed one standard 9-5/8 inch depth 10-frame hive body.

5. In each instance where a colony is kept less than twenty five (25) feet from a property line, a flyway barrier at least six (6 )feet in height shall be maintained parallel to the property line for a minimum of ten (10) feet in either direction from the hive. The flyway barrier may consist of a wall, fence, dense vegetation or a combination there of, such that bees will fly over rather than through the material to reach the colony.

6. A constant supply of fresh water shall be provided for the colonies on site within fifteen (15) feet of each hive.

7. Each beekeeper shall ensure that no wax comb or other material that might encourage robbing by other bees are left upon the grounds of the property. Such materials once removed from the site shall be handled and stored in sealed containers, or placed within a building or other insect proof container.

8. If the beekeeper serves the community by removing a swarm or swarms of honey bees from locations where they are not desired, the beekeeper shall be permitted to temporarily house the swarm on the property for no more than 30 days from the date acquired.

9. The sale of surplus honey or bee’s wax produced on site shall be permitted on property where the keeping of bees is permitted.

10. Africanized bees are prohibited.

With national honey bee colony losses at an all time high in 2013, now is the time to adopt a bee-friendly ordinance which will support our local honey bee populations, sustainable urban food systems, and local food security.

Bee Girl started this petition with a single signature, and now has 508 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.