As hive theft increases, beekeepers are turning to anti-theft technology

Woodland, Calif. – For a few weeks, beekeepers traveled by car to California to rent billions of bees from around the United States to pollute the state’s most valuable crop.

But when almonds began to sprout and cover the valleys with white and pink flowers, beekeeping was widespread, so beekeepers now resorted to GPS tracking devices, surveillance cameras, and other theft technologies to protect their colonies.

Hive theft has been reported elsewhere in the country, with three hives carrying about 60,000 bees recently recovered from a grocery chain garden in central Pennsylvania. Bees are the most sought after beetle in California during the world’s largest pollen season.

Officials say 1,036 beehives worth hundreds of thousands of dollars have been stolen from gardens in the past few weeks. The Big Hest includes 384 beehives taken from the field in Mendosino County, prompting the State Beekeeping Association to award a $ 10,000 reward for information leading to recovery.

Claire Towers spread the word about the award on Facebook, saying: A day later, anonymous aid workers recovered most of the boxes stolen by Forklift, 55 miles from a Tauzer family business on a rural property in Yolo County. One suspect has been arrested.

Investigators also found frames – used to hold honeycombs – in Helio Medina, another beehive that lost 282 hives a year ago.

According to Medina, the theft destroyed the app, so this year it has put GPS tracking in the boxes. He also installed cable locks around them and installed cameras nearby. As the almond blossoms approached and the hives became more valuable, he drove around the gardens in the dark.

“We have to do what we can to protect ourselves. No one can help us, ”said Medina.

Steals often occur at night, when no one is in the garden and bees return to the hive. The robber is usually a beekeeper or a beekeeper.

Bodge County Sheriff’s Investigator Rhody Jay Freeman, who has been monitoring beehive theft since 2013, said: “They often steal money and let the bees die.

Rising bee supply and flowering costs are less than $ 50 a year ago, renting a hive for less than $ 230 this year – prompting beekeepers to cheat.

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