Beekeeping basics: Starting a colony

Registering a Hive in Ontario

New and existing beekeepers in Ontario must register their hive(s)with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA). You will need to update your registration each year.

Anyone who owns or is in possession of honey bees must register annually with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA). There is no charge for registration. As part of the registration beekeepers are required to identify the location of beeyards and the number of honey bee colonies.

OMAFRA, Overview of Beekeeping Regulations: Registration, 2017, web.


The registration form is available in HTML format at Honeybee Registration Form – Under the Bees Act of Ontario on the OMAFRA website. If you email OMAFRA, they will send you a PDF version. Just complete the form and submit by email.

UPDATE: In 2018, online registration will be available through the AskOMAFRA portal for existing beekeepers.


Why register?

Registering your hive with the ministry will help the ministry contact you if there is a disease or pest outbreak in your area. They can also send inspectors to your apiary if you suspect there’s a pest or disease in your hive.