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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Mountville, PA, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    If I build swarm traps out of 8 frame mediums, for a volume of about 26 liters how much less success can I expect compared to a 40 liter trap?

    I can build 40 liters but if 26 liters is still fairly successful I would prefer to do that, due to lighter weight and less material costs.

    Thanks for everyone's opinions.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,652

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    Don't make a special trap. Just use two mediums. Use some recycled plywood for the top and bottom.
    I made entrance bottoms like this out of waste plywood.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Mountville, PA, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    How would you attach the two mediums

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,652

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    Ratchet strap, nylon straps, hive staples, metal connectors, rope, string, duct tape, diagonal drive screws, plumbers tape, wood strips....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Mountville, PA, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    :-) Perfect. Also I really like the entrance. I won't have to put a hole in my mediums.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Mountville, PA, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    Do you think a 1 medium trap would have a much lower success rate? I'm just thinking about weight.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Nevada, MO
    Posts
    200

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    A lot of people seem to use 5 frame deeps. I am planning to try some next year. I believe an 8 frame medium would be about the same size. This year I used 10 frame mediums with a base mAde from 1x3s screwed to a plywood bottom to increase the volume. I drilled the hole in the base. It worked. I used hive staples. Didnt like them too much. Think ill use thin plywood strips stapled on. I'm going to make some traps like Odfrank's too.

    Odfrank do you use screws through the bottom of the bottom boards?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Nevada, MO
    Posts
    200

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    Josiah, you asked about success rates. It would be interesting if people would post their rates. I caught one out of 7, but I was late getting them out. They were mostly 40 liter. The one that worked was 40 about.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,652

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    >Do you think a 1 medium trap would have a much lower success rate? I'm just thinking about weight.

    I tried eight frame medium depth in wineboxes and felt I had a lower rate. But I had less black comb in them also which might have been the factor. I am very swarmtrap weight conscious also. The swarm will only weight three or four pounds at the beginning so the weight will not be too much. Add beveled cleats as shown on my boxes. That is what makes them easy to carry. Every box I own has them.

    >Odfrank do you use screws through the bottom of the bottom boards?

    On the ones I made with entrance disks I did screw them on because I mean for them to be permanent swarm traps. On the ones with slotted plywood I strapped them with nylon Avi Strap.




  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    lee county, fl, usa
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    I have only had one swarm move into a 10 frame medium in the 2 years I've been putting out bait boxes, much better luck with 5 frame deeps. I'd like to have some move into medium so I can get frames drawn out but they go for the nuk instead.

    In spring I got 3 swarms in nuks at the same site where I now have a 10 frame medium set up all month with nothing. Got 2 swarms in nuks in my backyard this month, not the same site as medium.
    "Rule Three of beekeeping...Never cease to feel wonder" Laurie R. King--
    March 2010; +/- 30 hives, TF

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Mountville, PA, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    Quote Originally Posted by bevy's honeybees View Post
    I have only had one swarm move into a 10 frame medium in the 2 years I've been putting out bait boxes, much better luck with 5 frame deeps. I'd like to have some move into medium so I can get frames drawn out but they go for the nuk instead.

    In spring I got 3 swarms in nuks at the same site where I now have a 10 frame medium set up all month with nothing. Got 2 swarms in nuks in my backyard this month, not the same site as medium.
    Isn't a 10 frame medium similar in volume to a 5 frame nuc?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Mountville, PA, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    Quote Originally Posted by bevy's honeybees View Post
    I have only had one swarm move into a 10 frame medium in the 2 years I've been putting out bait boxes, much better luck with 5 frame deeps. I'd like to have some move into medium so I can get frames drawn out but they go for the nuk instead.

    In spring I got 3 swarms in nuks at the same site where I now have a 10 frame medium set up all month with nothing. Got 2 swarms in nuks in my backyard this month, not the same site as medium.
    Is a 10 frame medium close in volume to a 5 frame nuc?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Starkville, MS, USA
    Posts
    82

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    According to my reading (Michael Bush), the volume of an 8 frame medium is very similar to a 5 frame deep nuc. I just assume that it takes two 8 frame mediums to equal the brood area of a 10 frame deep box. After building a bunch of 8 frame mediums, I believe that this is a good number.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,652

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    >Isn't a 10 frame medium similar in volume to a 5 frame nuc?

    Maybe it is the size of the comb and height of the box that makes a five frame deep nuc box more attractive. They work well for me.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Otero County, New Mexico, USA
    Posts
    1,323

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    For catching swarms I use an old rotten 10 frame that has had bees in it for 15 years. Very good for catching stray swarms. Smells like bees. They love the thing, but it is rotten and nasty.

    For trapping out, I use a special built trap, similar to a hogan swarm harvester, that holds 14 frames. Usually the bees around here fill every inch of it. Had a cluster in it once that was bigger than a medicine ball. Pretty normal really. It has a pretty good success rate too. I would say I get 3 out of 4 hives. The ones I can't get are the ones I cannot get to seal.
    NM desert/mountain beekeeper - Black Mesa Honeybees.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Viola, OR, USA
    Posts
    60

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    If I'm using old eight frame brood boxes for traps, should I put eight frames and foundation/comb in the box or less?

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Vernon, AZ. USA
    Posts
    49

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    As you know, (or you would not have mentioned it) 40 liters is about the "sweet spot" for lure size. I have used an 8 frame deep, I think they are about 30 liters, and done fairly well. But, to your question! I currently use Warre boxes, 2 in a stack, for a swarm lure. Thats about 42 liters, and that setup will catch 2 to 3 swarms,for each swarm caught in single Warre boxes. Some areas nearly all are in the larger setups. A single is about 21 liters. There is a preference. The most important thing is to have a quality swarm lure, (synthetic pheromone). And, used boxes catch much better. The ratio is at least 3 to 1. These things are more important than old comb in the swarm lure. I put in good comb, still clean, if I have it. If you put a used box with a new, the catch rate is more like old boxes. I'd use 2 mediums. With at least 1 of them a used box. It seems they have an instinct to look to the future size of the colony.
    Last edited by jadebees; 10-08-2013 at 06:13 PM. Reason: add info

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Mountville, PA, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    Quote Originally Posted by jadebees View Post
    As you know, (or you would not have mentioned it) 40 liters is about the "sweet spot" for lure size. I have used an 8 frame deep, I think they are about 30 liters, and done fairly well. But, to your question! I currently use Warre boxes, 2 in a stack, for a swarm lure. Thats about 42 liters, and that setup will catch 2 to 3 swarms,for each swarm caught in single Warre boxes. Some areas nearly all are in the larger setups. A single is about 21 liters. There is a preference. The most important thing is to have a quality swarm lure, (synthetic pheromone). And, used boxes catch much better. The ratio is at least 3 to 1. These things are more important than old comb in the swarm lure. I put in good comb, still clean, if I have it. If you put a used box with a new, the catch rate is more like old boxes. I'd use 2 mediums. With at least 1 of them a used box. It seems they have an instinct to look to the future size of the colony.
    Exactly what I was looking for. I think I'll go with the 40 liter traps. I just figured if the success rate is close with a 20 or 30 liter I would save the effort and build smaller traps. :-)

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Fair Grove,MO,USA
    Posts
    1,626

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    I use a 10 frame deep ( that is on it's last leg) 3 or 4 old dark drawn comb frames in the middle and the rest foundation (wax). The bottom board is stapled to the hive, i make a screen with a wood frame that will cover the top of the hive and screw it to the top of the hive and put the lid over it. I like to keep it 8 ft. to 10 ft. off the ground (usually in a tree) i then put a cotton ball in the front of the hive with a few drops of lemongrass oil on it,i keep a board or screen that will cover the entrance close by, so when i catch a swarm, all i have to do is put a closer over the entrance and move it.If you use a swarm box smaller than a 8 or 10 frame deep or 2 med. boxes, you take a chance of a big swarm to obscound within two or three days. I've had it happen when i used 5 frame deep nuc boxes.JMHO

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Battle Ground , Washington, USA
    Posts
    704

    Default Re: Swarm Trap Size Opinions Wanted.

    I always fill the box with frames, If it takes you 1 week or 2 months to get back to it, you don't have a mess. I made traps out of 4 gallon fiber pots, what a pain, they work great until bees move in.
    I'm not tense, Just terribly, terribly alert!

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