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Thread: Pollen Traps

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    New Braunfels, TX
    Posts
    463

    Post

    I read that one should not leave a pollen trap on a hive more than one day at a time, and at other posts that people leave them on a week or more. This is confusing. I live in south Texas, very dry/hot weather. When should I put on a pollen trap, if at all, and how long may I leave it on? Since I have the bottom screen type, removing it would require lifting the deeps off the bottom board.

    Ron
    Hobbyist

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Milford, MI
    Posts
    328

    Post

    Good question Ron. I don't have much experience with pollen traps as of yet, but from what I gather it depends on the type of pollen trap your using.

    Some traps have a bypass in order to allow a percentage of bees in without having to pass through the trap. The main concern of using a trap, is that you may be stripping too much pollen from the bees as they return to the hive. They need a certain amount of that pollen in order to rear their brood with proper nutrition, if you take too much, your hive will become defficient and this could be detrimental to their survival.

    Some traps are designed to not strip all the pollen from their legs, but to leave the right amount on them to maintain proper nutrition. It is this type of design of which you can leave the trap on much longer, as long as you harvest the pollen to ensure it's freshness.

    As for when to install a trap, anytime is good, as the bees will be bringing in pollen from different sources all year round.

    I would direct your question to Lloyd Spears at Ross Rounds since they have the most favored type of pollen trap, the Sundance pollen trap, they are also working on a new design of trap or an improvement upon the existing one. I haven't seen the new one as of yet.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,313

    Post

    I know the Lusby's have a 3/8" hole drilled for a bypass. This allows the drones out and some of the bees in without going through the pollen trap. I'm sure it cuts down on the amount of pollen you trap, but it also insures that a queen can get out to mate and that some pollen is always getting in. Theirs are on all year round.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
    Posts
    1,649

    Post

    'ABC & XYZ' says that with the standard OAC bottom trap "at least 33 % of the pollen gathered by the bees was carried through the pollen barrier."

    Different references give different percentages for the amount of pollen getting through traps and into the hive:

    "The efficiency rarely exceeds 50%, i.e. less than 50% of the returning foragers loose their pollen pellets. Bees are ingenious in finding ways to avoid losing their pellets, like small holes or uneven screens and may even rob pollen from the collecting trays, if access is possible."
    http://www.fao.org/docrep/w0076e/w0076e10.htm#3.6

    Eva Crane suggests pollen foragers may even adapt to constant trappings by collecting small loads that they can carry through the grids into the hive.

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