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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Morgan, Utah, USA
    Posts
    252

    Default swarm-catching bucket

    I saw a 30-second video last year of two guys catching a swarm high in a tree using a pole bucket. Since I don't have a ladder-and really want to catch a swarm this year-I spent $15 at Home Depot and made one myself.

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    I unscrew the bucket from the pole and keep my swarm jump kit in it. The bucket cups the swarm, then the beekeeper gives it a sharp push to dislodge the bees from the branch, then pours the swarm right into a box or nuc.

    Now, I just need someone to call me. This is my third year advertising for swarms. Let's hope third time's the charm.
    If I'm neither sanguine, phlegmatic, choleric, nor melancholy, does that mean I'm out of humour?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN, USA
    Posts
    318

    Default Re: swarm-catching bucket

    Here's mine. Same bucket with variations. The paint roller pole is telescoping and the bucket swivels..

    http://honeysunapiary.wordpress.com/...tching-bucket/

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Morgan, Utah, USA
    Posts
    252

    Default Re: swarm-catching bucket

    Very nice, SteveBee! And thanks for the detailed instructions. Now if I had only seen this earlier...
    If I'm neither sanguine, phlegmatic, choleric, nor melancholy, does that mean I'm out of humour?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default Re: swarm-catching bucket

    Quote Originally Posted by dehavik View Post
    This is my third year advertising for swarms. Let's hope third time's the charm.
    Where/how are you advertising? Advertising's a lot like fishing...gotta have the right bait in the right honey-hole, at the right time...THEN you have to hope that nobody else already caught your fish!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Morgan, Utah, USA
    Posts
    252

    Default Re: swarm-catching bucket

    The first year was word-of-mouth in our enormous county of 1200 souls.

    The second year I was on swarm lists for four counties and placed fliers around the county.

    This year, the third, we moved far north and I have placed fliers in every major business in the town, spread the word with neighbors and friends, posted at the extension office, placed my name on the swarm list, and put an ad in the local paper for people to host a hive on their property. This month, I am scouting out placed to put bait hives and doing presentations in my kids' classes, so hope to spread the word that way, too.

    I think a lot of it must depend on 1) people spotting a swarm; 2) recognizing what it is and what it means; 3) making a connection in their minds between swarms and beekeepers; and 4) caring enough to make the effort to find a phone number and call. That's a lot of steps for folks.
    If I'm neither sanguine, phlegmatic, choleric, nor melancholy, does that mean I'm out of humour?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default Re: swarm-catching bucket

    might also try posting free classified ads on Craigslist.org ... got me lots of attention earlier this spring (though admittedly, when I added a price tag for the cut-outs the phone calls thinned out a lot)


    Just a thought, happy swarm chasing!
    -Rob

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Albuquerque, New Mexico
    Posts
    192

    Default Re: swarm-catching bucket

    I built a similar bucket. I just caught my 4th swarm today. Frequently the swarms here are bigger than the bucket mouth, so I sometimes just use a small hive instead. I used the pole for the first time to get two clusters. One was about 9 feet up and the other was about 12 feet up. The bucket worked great for this one, except that I didn't get the queen on the first shake. I got her on the second try, when I dumped the bucket on a sheet in front of the hive, and she crawled up the side of the hive and all the bees left the inside to cluster on the queen on the outside of the hive. We had to start all over again.

    Having a great time catching swarms!
    Ted

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    brownwood, TX, USA
    Posts
    676

    Default Re: swarm-catching bucket

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveBee View Post
    Here's mine. Same bucket with variations. The paint roller pole is telescoping and the bucket swivels..

    http://honeysunapiary.wordpress.com/...tching-bucket/
    Dang Steve, that looks commercially built. You must be a machinist or have one close at hand. Great tool.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    San Jose, Ca
    Posts
    372

    Default Re: swarm-catching bucket

    One thing that messed me up a few times has been the round bucket. I tried getting bees off the side of buildings and it just didn't work. Got an old cat litter bucket that is square and it works great now. I can slide it up along the side of the house and none fall down the sides.

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