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hive registration

Be a responsible beekeeper & a good neighbor by complying with local beekeeping ordinances

Los Angeles County

The County of Los Angeles requires all beekeepers to register their hives each year by submitting an Annual Apiary Registration Form with a $10 fee. (But wait! If you live in Long Beach, copy this form before you send it to the County, because the City will want a copy: see below.)

Benefits include advance notification of aerial spraying. County officials also respond to nuisance complaints.  The registration form includes the option of being included on the County’s list of swarm removal resources.

city of long beach

The City of Long Beach requires beekeepers to submit 1) a copy of their Los Angeles County registration form (You kept a copy, right? See above.) along with 2) its own Urban Agriculture Permit Application. Beekeepers should mail these to the Director of the Animal Care Services Bureau. There is no fee. The Animal Care Services "Beekeeping" page includes the links you'll need.

Ordinarily, Animal Care Services might or might not require an apiary inspection. During the pandemic, they will only inspect in person if there's a complaint. If this happens, there's a $68/hour inspection fee. They will ask for photos of hives and surroundings to verify compliance with regulations.

Municipal Code 6.24.010 details the regulations regarding beekeeping:

A. No more than four (4) beehives may be established or maintained on any residential property within the City.

B. Any person intending to establish or maintain any beehive on any residential property within the City must first register with the County of Los Angeles and provide a copy of such registration to the Director of the Animal Care Services Bureau.

C. No person shall establish or maintain a beehive in the front yard of the property.

D. No person shall establish or maintain a beehive at a distance less than ten feet (10′) from all property lines.

E. Beehive entrances shall face away from or be parallel to the nearest property line(s).

F. Beehives must either be screened so that the bees must fly over a six-foot barrier, which may be vegetative, before leaving the property, or be placed at least eight feet (8′) above the adjacent ground level.

G. A water source for bees shall be provided at all times on the property where the bees are kept to discourage bee visitation at swimming pools, hose bibs and other water sources on adjacent public or private property.

H. For the purposes of this Section, a “beehive” means any box, container, structure, chamber or shelter within which bees are kept or of which bees have taken possession.

I. For the purposes of this Section, the term “dwelling” means any place of human habitation.

We thank several City of Long Beach staff members in addressing our questions about this process!

beyond long beach

Beekeeping is legal in the County of Los Angeles. Individual cities in and around Los Angeles County may or may not place restrictions on whether or not bees are allowed and how they are managed. Before you invest in beekeeping equipment, check local ordinances to make sure you comply with existing regulations.

Being a good beekeeper extends beyond the letter of the law. Be mindful of your neighbors. Don’t allow your bees to become a nuisance.

Long Beach Beekeepers is a 501(c)3 organization

EIN# 81-4141237

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