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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    San Jose,CA
    Posts
    36

    Default Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    I have a deep box trap full of old black comb set in an old Pine tree. I look at it every week. For the past 2 mornings at about 10:00 am there are at least 20 to 30 bees at a given time coming in and out of the 1-inch diameter hole, and kind of clotting the hole. However my sense is that they don't act like an established hive with purposeful trips in and out. I thought I had caught a swam, but both days now in the afternoon I see maybe one or two bees and that's it. The location is pretty consistent with the amount of light it gets. My thought is at least bees in the area know of the existence of the box, and the chances are pretty good now?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Frisco Texas
    Posts
    168

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    Is there a feral hive near by, or is it just in a random spot? I always like seeing the bees find my traps, you just never know. All you can do is to set yourself up for success and hope for the best.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Calvert, Md,USA
    Posts
    1,701

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    They may check the hive out for several days before they move in. Last year, I watched them for three days before they moved in. I've read other folks have gone longer. It could be more than one hive checking it out. No guarantees. Fun though
    Rick

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    San Jose,CA
    Posts
    36

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    This is the set up.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    San Jose,CA
    Posts
    36

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    So it took about a week or 10 days for the swarm to finally move in after a few days of inspection then no activity. Then yesterday and the day before the bees were back and it was easy to see pollen going in and the hive smelled very sweet even from the ground, so I collected it last night I took it to a friends backyard who is located far enough away. My house is only a mile from the tree, so I thought that might be too close.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Calvert, Md,USA
    Posts
    1,701

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    Awesome!!
    I had a box checked out and now no activity. I thought maybe I had left some honey in one of the frames. This makes me re think they will be back. My experience has been when moving a hive, to put a branch or some obstacle for them to "bump" into and cause them to re orient their location. Even from one side of a yard to the other.(No other hives for them to drift into at the old location) Some bees will go back but few stay. They go to their new hive location. I remove any thing that resembles or may have the old hive "smell". That includes the cinder blocks the hive was on. Works for me
    Rick

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Vernon, AZ. USA
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    You will see up to 100's early arrivals, and they may move in. This is totally common for a trap box to attract a lot of early ones. Some times they accept , sometimes not. The queens favorite place will be where they move to. Be patient, and don't move a hive for a few weeks at least. New swarms abscond readily! They may be removing wax , prop., or sweets from it, too.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Calvert, Md,USA
    Posts
    1,701

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    I agree 100 %. Me thinks they were moving sweets the first time. This, with the drones, appears different but could be different group. I have no need to move it any time soon. I set mine up with a full combo of drawn and foundation less so I have that kinda time. Don't care to tie comb into frames unless I have to.
    Rick

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Hampstead, NC USA
    Posts
    608

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    Quote Originally Posted by jadebees View Post
    You will see up to 100's early arrivals, and they may move in. This is totally common for a trap box to attract a lot of early ones. Some times they accept , sometimes not. The queens favorite place will be where they move to. Be patient, and don't move a hive for a few weeks at least. New swarms abscond readily! They may be removing wax , prop., or sweets from it, too.
    Maybe I am greedy but I take them as soon as I can. I put them in a new deep along with a frame of brood. I was told the frame of brood will keep the swarm there. I've looked at some very nice swarms in my bait hives and have come back to see them gone.
    Another thing I do if the season is right and the swarm is large enough is let the queen lay some brood and then remove a frame or so with some bees and put them off to make another queen.
    Gotta make the most out of these wax building machines. Especially since most have likely come from my own stock.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Eugene, Oregon USA
    Posts
    323

    Default Re: Bees Checking Out Swarm Trap

    So I've got a trap (5 frame nuc) attached to the side of our cabin about 4' below a knot hole in the soffit of our cabin where a feral hive had been living for two years. I saw them late last fall, but haven't seen them since.

    Yesterday, about 20-30 bees were checking out the old entrance. I ran and got my swarm trap and mounted it to the wall. Within a few hours, there were about 50-60 bees in the air around the trap, and quite a few going in an out of the 1" entrance. I also put a trap-out cone over the old hive entrance.

    They stayed last night in the nuc, and this morning was cooler and rainy, but now that the sun is out there's more activity--still going in and out of the hive steadily and about 30-40 bees in the air flying around. Still, I haven't seen a "big" swarm yet--have I caught a very small swarm, or, are they still just trying to decide if they like it or not before they invite everyone over? There is steady traffic in and out of the nuc--I'd say a bee entering or exiting every 2-3 seconds, but I've yet to see hundreds, much less thousands, of bees....

    BD

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