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Bee Tree Trap Out HELP

4158 Views 9 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  delber
So here's my situation. I've found a nice bee tree. I would like to do a trap out and acquire the queen as this hive is at least 3 years old from the information i've been able to obtain from locals. It is located on the outside corner next to a school yard. Location is in the Y of a tree about 10' above ground. There are two openings that I see bees in, however only one has the nest. The lower of the two has the actual nest, the upper is a pass through only.

I've read about the diff methods of getting the bees out of the tree hollow. I'm not able to cut a hole into the tree since it's on school property. What methods would be best to get these girls out of their little hole?

Michael Bush said something about using water? Anyone know how fast to put it in?

Others have mentioned BEE Gone, etc.. How big does the hole have to be to insert it at the base of the nest?

Any other methods used out there for this sort of removal?
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+1 on the Hogan Trap Tree Vehicle Grass Soil Plant

Heres one i have set up now im doing
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Here is one I have going as well.
Tree Woody plant Trunk Plant Grass

I made a screened funnel inside the tube from the tree to the box. The bees can come out, but they will have difficulty getting back into the cone.
Wood Floor

I also put a frame of capped and uncapped brood in the box so the queen in the tree would wonder who in the word was laying eggs in her house. Once she comes out to investigate, she is most likely caught in the hive box where she will begin a new process at a new location. My thought is that most of the other bees will follow her into the box as well.
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Hey bee whisperer, have you done alot of these? This is my first, my 1 way conical funnel is in place, its been a week now, and i also pit a frame of uncapped and capped brood, i haven't been back this week yet, but once i see the queen is laying in my box and i remove the funnel, how long does it take the bees to rob the original hive of honey? Is it normally just a week or so? Thanks for the help
TO do it as Cleo Hogan mentions you only put the funnel on once the queen is out and if you want to kill the hive. The queen under normal circomstances won't go through the funnel into your box.

Basic gist. . . attach a box sealing the joint between the box and the tree well. Give them a day or so to figure it all out, then put in a frame of open brood and empty frames from your hives. This open brood will draw out the nurse bees and the queen will come looking. the next day after you put the open brood in inspect your box for the queen. If she's there and you want to kill the hive, put the cone on. They will come out, but won't be able to get in. If you look on here for Cleo Hogan and PM him he'll forward you all of his methods. They are great. (I have them)
There are various ideas and methods to this process. If you are not in a hurry to empty the tree, you may be able get several new starts off of one hive. However, if the objective to remove the old hive, which is what is most likely the case, then you might utilize the cone ASAP. The queen will go through the cone, but she may be later in the process, because the old hive does need to diminish a good bit. Or, with open brood, she may come looking for who else is laying in her hive.
It could take several weeks. Your funnel cone should probably be left in place until most all traffic through the cone has stopped for at least a week or more. The queen, hopefully, will have left the old hive in search for her workers, or a competitor, etc. Time will allow the larvae in the old hive to have become adult workers and leave as well.

After the traffic out of the old hive, through the cone, has ended, you can remove the cone.
That way the bees in the new hive can rob all the left over honey and pollen from the old hive comb.
After sufficient time has passed, the activity from the new hive to the old hive will have ceased. This may take a couple of weeks.
Then you can seal up the entrance of the old hive with steel wool. This should prevent any new honey bee colonies from moving back in.
The new hive can then be moved to a new location.

The best thing is to watch and see what is going on. It seems like situations often play out different with each hive.
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"Any other methods used out there for this sort of removal?"
If you have permission to attach a nuc or swarm trap to the tree, consider using a CAPtrap with a short length of opaque hose between the box and the tree and a removable wire cone in the box. Videos: and Seal all entrances to the hive in the tree but one, and attach a short (6" to 12" or so as needed) length of 1½" to 2½" opaque hose to that entrance. Consider using steel wool or wadded up aluminum foil to seal small holes or wrap the tree with black plastic if necessary to seal entrances. Let the bees go in and out of the open hose with no box for a day. Then attach the hose to a nuc or swarm trap and place a frame of open brood and a frame of drawn comb in the box, with no wire cone yet, so the bees can come and go from the tree into and through the box to tend to the brood and forage. The box should have an exit hole right below where the hose enters the box. Then 1 or 2 days later insert a wire cone in the box trapping the bees outside the tree as they come out to tend to the brood or forage. The hardest part is usually sealing all the entrances. Good luck and be careful on the ladder.
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Im glad i didnt put my funnel on too early then, im trying to remove the ferrel colony completely. Thats good to know the queen can come through the funnel too. And i do agree, the hardest part of this job is making sure the bees can only come and go through the new hive, bees are VERY persistent on finding a way through the trash bag stapled to the tree. Let me ask you this, do everyones bees get pissed doing this method of removal? This particular colony was mild mannered till i put this trap on, now it seems like they are pissed most the time. I dont mind it, but they are popping the land owner unfortunately
If there's no queen in the outside box then they're a "queenless hive" and will be quite ticked off. If you put a frame of open brood in there they'll calm down a little, however the best way is to reduce the ammt. of bees frequently. Once you can take 5 frames or so of bees off of the trapout then remove them to another place and add another frame of open brood about a day or two later. I had one trap out last year that I did on a building that I didn't get the queen. She never came through the cone. When I was finished there was no way for the bees to get back in to rob things out because wax moths had closed up any access to the comb.
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