Use recent queen cages as swarm lures?
Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Southern Maryland
    Posts
    146

    Default Use recent queen cages as swarm lures?

    We installed our first two packages this weekend and while building the equipment last week we had scouts from somewhere checking out our hives. So in the next few days I will have newly emptied queen cages from our two packages. I was thinking I could use them to entice a swarm. I have accidentally caught swarms before and didn't know what to do with them - someone dropped off hive bodies for us to consider beekeeping, and a swarm moved in to the hives before I could clean and store the hardware. Yeah, I lost those by clumsily moving them.

    Was going to set up a 10-frame hive (deep) with frames and drop in the old queen cage and a light swab of LGO. These would be set in the same area where the old swarm moved in - which happens to be the same place the scouts were lingering a few days ago. Also it happens to be the driveway between two doors, but I'll solve one problem at a time.

    If the cage is even useful, should I baggie the cages and poke holes (like I hear people do with LGO and Q-Tips) or just drop them in the box? Do I use a regular opening reducer or do I need to drill holes?

    We have more packages coming in a few weeks, so we have enough equipment either way. We're in Southern MD (below DC, more like Northern VA).

    Thanks for your thoughts.
    Last edited by Green Tractor; 04-04-2016 at 08:55 AM. Reason: sPeElling eRRiR

  2. Remove Advertisements
    BeeSource.com
    Advertisements
     

  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    4,646

    Default Re: Use recent queen cages as swarm lures?

    Things from old hives work for attracting swarms. IMO old brood comb and LGO is the best thing you can do. Height is the next best thing. Anything after that will only slightly increase your chances.

    Bees checking out old equipment could be scouts, but they could also bee robbers or propolis collectors.

    I don't think a q cage that the queen was in for a week will retain much smell for more that a day, and have enough left over to entice a swarm. I think if you had a hundred q cages it might be that same as a few drops of LGO.

    You want a hole about 1.5 " inches towards the bottom, I don't think shape matters.

    I use q tip dipped in LGO in plastic snack size zip lock, retains the smell all season and even in the winter.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Southern Maryland
    Posts
    146

    Default Re: Use recent queen cages as swarm lures?

    Quote Originally Posted by FlowerPlanter View Post
    Things from old hives work for attracting swarms. IMO old brood comb and LGO is the best thing you can do. Height is the next best thing. Anything after that will only slightly increase your chances.

    Bees checking out old equipment could be scouts, but they could also bee robbers or propolis collectors.

    I don't think a q cage that the queen was in for a week will retain much smell for more that a day, and have enough left over to entice a swarm. I think if you had a hundred q cages it might be that same as a few drops of LGO.

    You want a hole about 1.5 " inches towards the bottom, I don't think shape matters.

    I use q tip dipped in LGO in plastic snack size zip lock, retains the smell all season and even in the winter.
    Thanks. That makes sense. I have 4 oz of pure LGO (for soap making) so can spare a drop or two for swarm lure. I'll toss in the queen cage while I am at it.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    523

    Default Re: Use recent queen cages as swarm lures?

    We keep a bucket of old queen cages in the shop - there is no interest in it. Save them for when you need to cage a queen yourself.

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •