Registering Your Hives!
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Whether you’re new or a veteran beekeeper, between January 1, 2021, and March 31, 2021, is the time to register your hives – or renew your hive registration – on the state’s sensitive crops directory.
Since 2016, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS) has partnered with the non-profit company FieldWatch™ Inc. to provide online registry tools for sensitive crops, including beehives. Iowa code limits and restricts the timing of commercial applications of pesticides that are toxic to bees within one mile of beehives registered on the state’s sensitive crops directory. According to the rule adopted in 2009, applicators can apply chemicals near registered hives only before 8 a.m. or after 6 p.m. Applicators are not required to contact the hive owner.
Beekeepers can choose to register either on DriftWatch™ or BeeCheck™; both are part of FieldWatch. Registration is free, but all registrations expire each year on March 31. Users are required to annually renew registrations to confirm that the hives are still active, and to validate the location and number of hives.
If already registered
If you are already registered, you should receive a reminder email from FieldWatch Customer Service in January each year. In that email is a hyperlink to the website to renew your registration. Monitor your email during January each year; you can also search your email for FieldWatch in case you miss the email, and take a couple minutes to complete the renewal.
New beecheck app
A new beecheck app is available for both iPhone/iOS and Android/Google users. The app can be used to add hives in the field, move hives by GPS, or move hives to other states for pollination, including California. Download the app for your phone and then check on your account.
Ordering signs, flags
DriftWatch sells field signs and beehive flags for beekeepers to use near approved apiaries. These signs can be ordered when you log into your FieldWatch account. Access the page to order signs here.
IDALS also sells 12X18-inch aluminum “No Spray” signs for apiaries. They can be shipped to you or picked up at their downtown Des Moines office. You can call the office at 515.281.7656 for questions about picking up signs.
To order, go to the IDALS website and click on the “Order Field Markers” in the right-hand column.