Neighbor complains, beekeeper must move

Beekeeper Latisha Strickland's Portland neighbor complained, and now she has to move (July 4, 2013, KOIN 6 News)
Beekeeper Latisha Strickland's Portland neighbor complained, and now she has to move (July 4, 2013, KOIN 6 News)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — For 13 years, Latisha Strickland has been a beekeeper. She keeps her hives with five different colonies and approximately 240,000 honeybees in her Northeast Portland rental home.

But a complaint from a neighbor could cause her eviction.

Beekeeper Latisha Strickland has 240,000 honeybees at her Portland home (July 4, 2013, KOIN 6 News)

Beekeeper Latisha Strickland has 240,000 honeybees at her Portland home (July 4, 2013, KOIN 6 News)

“I got a call from the property management company saying somebody made a complaint and the bees would have to move,” Strickland told KOIN 6 News. “They gave me a 30-day notice to move. And the bees would have to be moved in two weeks.”

That deadline is July 7 — or she has to go.

Strickland said she’s not sure which neighbor has an issue, but she does know moving the bees in the heat is risky.

“Anytime you move them, anytime you disturb them, especially if it’s too hot or too cold, they’re going to die. Some of them are going to die. And we’ve just had enough of that.”

She’s been preparing them for the move in the early morning hours when it’s cooler by putting a screen on the entrance. That’s challenging since the bees naturally want to go outside.

She’s worried they might suffocate.

Strickland is also an advocate for pollinators, is against pesticides and said honeybees like hers greatly benefit agriculture.

“People like me are the people making sure the bees become strong.”

Next week she will meet with the property managers and share that information. “I have a slim chance of being able to keep them here,” she said.

The property managers have not returned multiple requests for comment to KOIN 6 News at this time.

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