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Apiary Registration

Honey Bee HivesThe Apiary Act of 1995 includes a section on registration of apiaries.  In the Apiary Act, new apiaries are required to be registered with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture.  These apiaries are required to be re-registered every 3 years.  The list of registered beekeepers and apiaries is maintained by the State Apiarist and upon registration, the beekeeper receives a unique registration number.  This number is the beekeeper’s personal registration number and can be used to brand hives and equipment.  Registration cards are available from this office, County Extension Agent offices, your local beekeeper association or this website.

There are a number of benefits to registering your apiary:

  • E-mail notification of disease outbreaks and updates from the State Apiarist.
  • E-mail and postal notification of aerial spraying of pesticides in your area when we are notified of the spraying projects.
  • Free inspection of your colonies if you are selling them, moving them or you feel you may have a bee health problem.
  • Registering your bees helps to protect your bees and your neighbor’s bees in the case of an American Foulbrood (AFB) outbreak or other regulatory pest.
  • If your colonies have to be destroyed due to American Foulbrood or other regulated pest or disease you will be compensated if they are registered.  There is no indemnity paid for the loss of unregistered bee colonies.

What can happen if you do not register your bees or your apiary?

  • Failure to register you bees or comply with the provisions of “The Apiary Act of 1995” may result in the confiscation your bees, beekeeping equipment and a $500.00 fine.
  • If your colonies have to be destroyed due to American Foulbrood or other regulated pest or disease you will not be compensated if they are not registered.

Please remember that by law all honey bee colonies in the state of Tennessee are required to be registered with this office. All honey bees and used equipment transported into, out of, within or through the state of Tennessee are required by law to be inspected.