My question is, has anyone ever started a bee tree on their property on purpose in order to draw bees and start new colonies?
Ok, so right now I'm trapping two trees using Hogan traps. I introduced brood, and now have Queen cells. I brought 10 deeps back to my home apiary and hoping they will take off from there. The landowners want them removed and the trees sealed. I wish I had one of these trees on my property and I'm thinking of actually putting bees into a sycamore and letting them do their thing. Then making draws with a Hogan trap. Is this a crazy idea or what???
...and I'm thinking of actually putting bees into a sycamore and letting them do their thing. Then making draws with a Hogan trap. Is this a crazy idea or what???
You would be wise to check the beekeeping laws in Ohio first. Most states have laws about keeping bees and a requirement to have removable frames in your hives. Our laws here would define what you want to do as beekeeping, and without removalble frames, you would be in violation of the law.
As long as you use feral survivors like the ones you caught. I wouldn't want to contaminate the area with domestic bees that require treatment to survive.
It would be far more productive if you hived them and made splits and queens from them, than one or two clumps of bees w/o the queen to get from a trap out that require specialized equipment, custom made nuc, screen, tape, spray foam, fixtures on the tree...and a lot of time.
Chances are they will not even stay in a tree unless you put some open brood to lock them in.
It will easier and more productive to make swam traps and set them up everywhere. There is a chance that the owner of the bee tree would appreciate a swarm trap "that will prevent bees from moving into another tree, his house or shed".
I catch 20 - 30 swarms in trap a year, and can't imagine doing another trap out in order to get another hive. Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much work! And the pay off may be too small too late in the year to even have a hive survive until spring.