Wanna catch my own swarm
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Lexington, SC
    Posts
    28

    Default Wanna catch my own swarm

    Hey there! I am new to beekeeping and I REALLY want to try and catch my own swarm. I had my husband build me a swarm trap and I am anxious to use it, but several people have advised against this due to this being my first year and the danger of catching an Africanized swarm. I live in central SC. Am I being too risky trying to catch my own swarm? I just think it would mean more to me than to just "buy some bees" and ship them to my house. Anyone have some advice on catching my own swarm?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    10,833

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    Welcome to Beesource!

    Setting out a swarm trap and hoping a swarm will move in is a fine idea. However, expecting that a swarm from one of your hives is stretching it, probably, unless you can move that trap several hundred yards away from your hive. You might catch a swarm from someone else's hive, though.

    You can improve your chances of catching a swarm by scenting your trap with 3-4 drops of lemongrass oil. You can get more ideas from this thread:
    https://www.beesource.com/forums/show...ighlight=swarm

    While African bees are a possibility, that is not a reason to not utilize a swarm trap. If the bees you get are too hot, you can requeen them with a known queen. At worst, you can kill the AHB bees and be no worse off that if you didn't try trapping in the first place. Even Beeks in Florida utilize swarm traps, and there are certainly AHB bees there.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pensacola, FL
    Posts
    139

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    I think she's talking about catching a swarm to populate her first hive. If that's the case, then I'd want to put out as many swarm traps as I could in order to increase my odds of getting something. If you wind up with more swarms than you want, you can always combine down to a number that you like. I'd recommend aiming to wind up with at least two colonies when it's all said and done.

    Brian
    Hobby Beekeeper - Second Year - Two Hives

  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    4,323

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    Heck yeah set the trap out. In fact ask the hubby to make 5 more and set those out too. Swarm trapping is a great way to start your beekeeping experience. IF you get an africanized swarm, it's all part of the experience. Just take care of it accordingly. BTW, keep the AB's down there! lol

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Santa Rosa County, Florida
    Posts
    571

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    I don't think there is much danger of catching an africanized swarm in mid SC.We don't even have them here in northwest Florida.YET.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    South Jordan, Utah, USA
    Posts
    148

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    I think catching swarms is a great way to start out, but I would still order at least one pkg/nuc of bees just in case you happen to come up empty...you still want the experience of beekeeping one way or the other! I currently have 22 traps out, but still bought a nuc. If I happen to catch a couple of swarms by then I will just re-sell the nuc before I get into it...somebody will buy them, or I'll use them...either way I win. Good luck!!

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    sacramento CA
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    Where you go about setting the traps for the swarm. Just about anywhere?

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    South Jordan, Utah, USA
    Posts
    148

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    I've only got them in people's yards. I'm not brave enough to put them just anywhere. I work with about 250 people, so most of them are in co-worker's yards. I've also gone up and asked people about hosting them when I drive by and see a great location...usually on 1 acre or bigger lots. Have had bee activity at several boxes, but haven't heard of any swarms being caught quite yet here in the Salt Lake Valley. Places they put them are in trees, near fruit trees, grapes, vines; some along fencelines; I have a couple in/near old sheds and another one in a firewood pile (put firewood all around it). We'll see what happens.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Lynchburg, OH USA
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    Around here the guys at the beekeeping club who are on the Sherriff's call list to capture swarms have a list they keep of new beekeepers that want swarms. They will call you if you are close to where a swarm call is and let you keep the swarm. Also there is a website you can put yourself on for people to contact you to catch swarms if you get the fever. Last year I got 2 swarms and an awesome cut out from an old barn off this site. I have a link to the web site on mine. http://barneysbees.com there is also a link to a video that the homeowner took of me and my son removing the hive from the barn. I checked my hives last weekend and the hive from the barn cutout is doing better than all the others.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Laurens, SC, USA
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    As far as I have been told, we do not yet have Africanized bees in South Carolina. However, they keep saying it is not a matter of if, but when.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    53,601

    Default Re: Wanna catch my own swarm

    >Anyone have some advice on catching my own swarm?

    There are many discussions on here about setting bait hives. Try a search on "bait hives" and "swarm traps".

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesferal.htm#baithives
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

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