make WWAY your homepage  Become a fan on facebook  Follow us on twitter  Receive RSS Newsfeeds  MEMBERS: Register | Login

Leland residents buzzing about proposed bee ordinance

READ MORE:
 

LELAND, NC (WWAY) -- A sticky situation is developing in the Waterford neighborhood of Leland where neighbors are trying to put a bug in the ear of councilmembers about the pros-and-cons of beekeeping.

"I have two hives and at this time of the year there's probably about 50,000 tops,” said beekeeper John Baum.

In April 2013 John Baum took up the hobby of beekeeping. Baum admits he didn’t ask for his neighbors’ permission, but he says they all kept swarming by his house asking the same question.

"The first thing they asked was 'when are we going to get some honey,’” said Baum.

But at the October Leland Town Council meeting Baum says he was stung by two of his neighbors who expressed concerns over the hives.

"My wife is extremely allergic to bees,” said one Waterford resident. “She cannot take any medicine to counter act any reaction once it starts."

"I've got two dogs and if they get stung I'm going to have to rush them into Wilmington to the 24-hour hospital because all of the vets are closed at night,” said Edward Cohen.

To try and come to an amicable agreement the town council is now considering an ordinance, but bee hobbyists say that it would behoove their opposition to do a little research first.

"Honey bees are very docile,” said Baum. “You could basically stick your hand in a hive at times and they'll just crawl all over you. I've heard more reports about dog bites and animal bites than anybody being stung. People are allergic and they have epi-pens. People are allergic to peanuts, and people are allergic to shellfish, but they still go out to restaurants."

"These honey bees are very tame,” said Donna Armiger, who is allergic to bees. “I go to John and Vicky's house all of the time, many times by myself to feed their cat, and I'm not afraid of going over there at all."

The Leland Town council made no decision on a proposed ordinance on Thursday night instead deciding to wait until the January meeting so they could gather more information on the subject.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.

»

Bees or not to Be's

It should be common sense. In a built up neighborhood where houses are close together, it should be common sense not to keep bees next to somebody who could possibly become seriously ill or worse after being stung. Its nothing to do with Bees, we all respect to the bee and its role. These hives should be taken to somewhere less populated.
What is surprising is that feeding ducks (harmless) leads to complaints and letters from the HOA. Feeding geese (harmless) is forbidden under the covenants and could lead to fines (which we are paying $50,000 a year to have a dog chase them off?) Keeping bees that can cause harm is permitted because there is nothing on the covenant? perhaps I should keep an alligator or rhino?
Common sense, move out of a built up area with the bees.

This is nothing to do with the person in question knowing all the clicky members of the HOA is it?

Give the bees a break!!

I am a beekeeper in Riegelwood. I have been a beekeeper for about 23 years. I keep some of my hives here at my house in my back yard. The reason I have had to move some of my hives here is because the bears kept destroying their homes out in the country. When I put up an electric fence, someone stole the shocker I was using. Beekeepers have it bad enough with maintaining the colonies of bees, finding a place to keep them, dealing with pesticides and diseases, and then some crybabies are scared they MIGHT get stung. Most people are scared to get stung by a honeybee because they have NEVER BEEN STUNG!!

9550 Ploof Road -Bee's new Home?

I run a small industrial park, we support many hobbyists that do not fit quite into the zoning of Waterford.

I am happy to rent a space for some bee keepers. Its about a mile from the front entrance to Waterford. Plenty of open area.

caution you may learn about bees causing a different opinion

I have 3 hives in my back yard; inside one of Canada's larger cities and they are not a problem. Wasps however, are a huge pain in the late summer and into fall. The differences are many if you take the time to look. Those not overly fond of bees have all kinds of excuses for not doing anything other than banning bees period; and I'm sure they are confusing bees and wasp.

Generally speaking, if a bee is furry I.E. honey bees and bumble bees you will not have a problem unless you are a threat. Stinging is a last resort generally resulting in the death of the bee.

If a bee is hairless, yellow and black it is almost certainly a wasp/ yellow jacket. These are mean, aggressive and will sting you for no real reason.

If you can see the nest it is most likely wasps or hornets because honey bees live in hives and do not make nests. Bumble bees do not make nests that you can see and are generally in the ground.

When you are cooking that piece of meat on the BBQ you are attracting wasps, not bees. Wasps feed meat to their larvae as a source of protein. Honey bees are fed strictly pollen and nectar. You can exploit this fact by building a wasp trap with a piece of salmon in the corner of your yard. Google and You Tube will help a lot here.

I quite often do work on my hives in just a tee shirt and shorts; although I do wear sandals since I stepped on one got stung on the toe. A honey bee sting for me is generally like getting stabbed by a thorn, with little or no swelling. Wasp stings on the other hand hurt way more than I like and generally swell up a lot.

I keep bees because it helps the local vegetable and flower gardens. Honey from local honey also helps with allergies like hay fever. I did have one neighbour who was less than keen on bee hives so close, but doesn't worry about them now because the bees are not a problem and the free honey is appreciated.

To the nay sayers I would remind them that not all that long ago people thought the world was flat,and that woman were property and couldn't vote.

A complete overreaction

First of all, there's bee populations everywhere. Whether someone's got a hive in their yard or not doesn't make a whole lot of difference to their neighbors as long as you don't go IN their yard and mess with the hive. The bees are not going to congregate around your property. They disperse widely. In fact, if you think about it, it's likely that you don't see any more bees on your plants than you did before they had the hives. It's likely that there's a whole lot more beekeeping around than you realize. Leland is not the urban city that you are likely familiar with, so realize this, quit whining, and understand that there are snakes, alligators, bees, wasps, moles, 'possums and other wildlife that will be sharing your space.

You always have had a much bigger chance of getting stung by wasps (yellow jacket, typically), and that's what gets most people when they say they got stung by a "bee". Those are aggressive, and they build nests everywhere, and really won't care about an ordinance.

"My wife is extremely allergic to bees,”.... You'd best make sure she has an epi-pen, because when a wasp stings her, she's going to need it. If she really is that allergic, you would be advised to have her begin immunotherapy.

"I've got two dogs and if they get stung"..... If your dogs get stung by a bee or a wasp, you will likely have to do nothing. Most dogs have little to no reaction to insect bites. Your dogs ever find a fire ant mound? Some get swollen where they are bitten, and benedryl is their friend. Occasionally, a dog is allergic, and requires treatment. If you know that's the case, you should already have an epi-pen - yes, there are dog appropriate dosages.

Also, the video shows a couple instances of exterminators treating wasps. What does that have to do with bees?

Educate

The benefits of honeybees outweigh the perceived cons cooked up by persons who refuse to take the time to educate themselves on the matter. Bee stings will typically not bother a pet so much that they must be rushed to the hospital ASAP. I will be watching this story unfold, if Mr. Baum ends up needing a place to keep his bees I will gladly let him use my yard outside of the Leland city limits. Our gardens would love it!
It's a sad state of affairs when people fear the very things nature gave us but turn a blind eye to the pink slime in thier beef.

honeybees

I wonder if the folks complaining about their neighbor having the bee hives know there are wild honeybees? There could possibly be one in the woods close by the area and they forage far and wide collecting nectar to make their honey. I live in the Wilmington city limits and see the wild honeybees in my flower beds every summer. The wild honey bee is a little smaller than it's domestic cousin.
Beyond all this in growing up in Rowan County my grandfather never had less than 6 active hives in his yard as close as 30 ft. to his home. There was a multitude of us cousins that would be in his yard at one time playing and none of us ever were stung by his bees. Only time one had to be on guard was when he was harvesting the honey and we were taught not to go out close to the hive area while he was doing this.
And lastly do the neighbors know that the best remedy for allergies is honey that is made by local honeybees in your area? Think on this. The nectar the honey is made from is collected in the area thus all the ingredients are indigenous to the area whereas if you buy honey in the store it would be from nectar in another location. In growing up none of us ever had allergies in our family until moving away from grandpa's honey. He passed on and the hives were done away with. Sadly we all learned to late about how the honey is good for the allergy remedy.

really?

At Waterford you CAN'T: wash your car in the driveway, plant a tree without permission, have a yard sale, use the community gym until 18 years old, or have a small business in your home (the list goes on.) His yard is probably less than 15 feet from the next house. What makes this guy think he can have bee hives? Maybe because he has had steady handyman work from the Association for over five years. Many people at Waterford have been denied because of the restrictive rules. Either get rid of the bees or move out of a planned community.

I worked in a neighborhood

I worked in a neighborhood similar to yours. I dealt with the complaints and the things complained about were so trivial. John Doe has a window unit air conditioner in his attic space. It quit raining five minutes ago, why is there standing water in my ditch. There's too much water in the ponds. There's not enough water in the ponds. Jane Doe's son parked his pick up truck on the grass part of their property. I chose a property that is adjacent to the tennis court, but the people who play there are too loud. I know the POA okayed my neighbor's paint color, but I think it's ugly and needs to be changed. It was like dealing with kindergartners.

Are the bees hurting you in anyway? Are the bees swarming your property? Don't you have anything better to do with your time than to make trouble for your neighbors?

You can sit there all day and complain about stupid stuff if you want. But those of us out here in the real world wish their problems were as trivial as yours.

Leave the bees alone!. They

Leave the bees alone!. They do not fly at night and if your dog gets stung, then he got too close to the hive. I had bees for 20 years and the only person that got stung was a peeping tom that tried using the hive as a step to get over the fence.
As for the lady, they are not going to target her and sting her. They are docile and normally will leave people alone. The only reason they would sting you is if you bother the hive. Would you not defend your home if invaded?
What are you going to do in the spring, post signs telling the other bees that they cannot fly in this area and collect pollen. " Warning.. No Fly Zone.. Honeybees not allowed beyond this point."

No Business

If this guys wants to keep bees, he needs to move to the country. He has no business living in a residential neighborhood. I live in a town home community, and another neighbor allowed a large bees nest to grow over her front window with zero regard to her next door neighbors just mere inches from her. I complained to her very nicely, after a couple months of in action, I finally called the HOA and had them remove it. The lady who is allergic should carry an epi pen at all times, but as a home owner living inside of HOA you have responsibility to keep up your property. That includes not allowing dangerous impediments to your fellow neighbor.

I have 3 hives in my back

I have 3 hives in my back yard; inside one of Canada's larger cities and they are not a problem. Wasps however, are a huge pain in the late summer and into fall. The differences are many if you take the time to look. Those not overly fond of bees have all kinds of excuses for not doing anything other than banning bees period; and I'm sure they are confusing bees and wasp.

Generally speaking, if a bee is furry I.E. honey bees and bumble bees you will not have a problem unless you are a threat. Stinging is a last resort generally resulting in the death of the bee.

If a bee is hairless, yellow and black it is almost certainly a wasp/ yellow jacket. These are mean, aggressive and will sting you for no real reason.

If you can see the nest it is most likely wasps or hornets because honey bees live in hives and do not make nests. Bumble bees do not make nests that you can see and are generally in the ground.

When you are cooking that piece of meat on the BBQ you are attracting wasps, not bees. Wasps feed meat to their larvae as a source of protein. Honey bees are fed strictly pollen and nectar. You can exploit this fact by building a wasp trap with a piece of salmon in the corner of your yard. Google and Youtube will help a lot here.

I quite often do work on my hives in just a tee shirt and shorts; although I do wear sandals since I stepped on one got stung on the toe. A honey bee sting for me is generally like getting stabbed by a thorn, with little or no swelling. Wasp stings on the other hand hurt way more than I like and generally swell up a lot.

I keep bees because it helps the local vegetable and flower gardens. Honey from local honey also helps with allergies like hay fever. I did have one neighbour who was less than keen on bee hives so close, but doesn't worry about them now because the bees are not a problem and the free honey is appreciated.

To the nay sayers I would remind them that not all that long ago people thought the world was flat,and that woman were property and couldn't vote.

His beehive is not hurting

His beehive is not hurting anyone or anything. Live and let live. Man I wish my problems were so trivial.

Sorry to break it to you....

"If this guys wants to keep bees, he needs to move to the country" Leland is the country. Wilmington would be considered the city in this area. Maybe you should move back to the real city?

I take it no gardens are allowed in there either?

"another neighbor allowed a large bees nest to grow over her front window" Sorry, but those would not be bees. That was probably a wasp nest. New rules put in place because the city folk want them would have no effect on wasps building nests.

All in all, this appears to be a problem within the Waterford development. How can two people have enough clout over a town council that they would even look at an issue? Clearly someone has the goods on someone in town council. How about Waterford add to their restrictive covenants that Bees, wasps, frogs, snakes, mice, moles, and other animals are not allowed within the area under it's control? If so many people are in favor of it, it should pass without issue, and effectively becomes law.

Confused

I think you are confusing wasps and honeybees. They are two very different things. Educate yourself before you comment, please.