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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Auguata, NJ. U.S.A.
    Posts
    2

    Default How do I catch a wild swarm

    I'm new to beekeeping, and while I was doing some excavating, I found a bee hive in a old cherry tree. My question is: how close or far should I put my nuc to the existing hive, and is there a height prefrence that I should hang it. I just got some swarm lure and I'm wondering what my chances are of catching the bees if and when they swarm. Also, how often should I check to see if in fact I have cought the swarm.
    Thanks for any and all info.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,598

    Default

    I know a lot of people use nucs for catching swarms, but many swarms are too large for a nuc so they don't get caught. If it was me, I'd use a deep box for the swarm trap. Most swams like to land 6 to 10 to 15 feet up in a tree, so if you have the ability to hang a box that high up, that's what I'd do. Check on it once every couple of weeks or a month is fine. If you get one, then remove the box and place it in your beeyard at dusk.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Phelps Co. Missouri USA
    Posts
    856

    Default

    They say the trap should be 8-10 ft. high, 50 -300 ft. away.
    Lure and old comb are attractants, however it is still a gamble, they may or may not use it.

    Just look now & then to see if a steady stream of bees are entering and leaving.

    I'd say the odds are less than 50-50, my luck at least.

    Good Luck
    PCM

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,824

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by PCM View Post
    They say the trap should be 8-10 ft. high, 50 -300 ft. away.Lure and old comb are attractants, however it is still a gamble, they may or may not use it.I'd say the odds are less than 50-50, my luck at least.
    PCM
    I have caught 25 this year. All at a height reachable from the ground. I am getting about 2 out of three filled. Lemongrass oil and old comb in five frame nuc boxes or larger.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Orlando, FL
    Posts
    1,313

    Default

    Yeah, if you properly bait it with pheromone lure, you'll get pretty good success rate.

    Mine is 80% last season. 4 out of five

    This year I have too many bees and not enough equipment, so I did not put out the traps.

    In fact I caught five swarms in boxes in my yard, and I don't even have bees at my house. One time the box was still in my pickup in the driveway.

    You'll do fine if there are bees around.
    Troy

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Augusta County, Va. U.S.A.
    Posts
    102

    Default

    My swarm bait hive is a small top bar hive that has 6 top bars. I have a cedar tree that fell 2 or 3 years ago in a wind storm. I set it in that with the entrance hole facing south. I can reach it. I put in waxed top bars and smear lemongrass oil inside with a q-tip. I left the q-tip inside. I did this last year and caught a swarm and set it out about 3 or 4 weeks ago and a swarm moved in this past week. My bait hive is about 50 or 60 feet in front of my hives.
    I have a neighbor that has about 10 Langs and noticed he set 2 of them on the ground about 40 or 50 feet in front of his hives, just this week. I am assuming that he does this to catch his swarms but I have never talked to him. He doesn't live there but has his hives there at his sons house.
    Robee

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Auguata, NJ. U.S.A.
    Posts
    2

    Default

    Thanks for everyone's help. I'll let you know if I am lucky enough to catch this, or another wild swarm. This beekeeping stuff, so far, is FUN!
    Again, thanks.

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