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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The wife said the bees were being loud. They're on our rooftop.

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Sure enough, they were swarming. Went outside and saw them starting to gather on a branch over the driveway. Our ladder wasn't tall enough so we just parked the car under them.

The wife propped her iphone up on a trash can, capturing the whole ordeal in this sped-up video. She then of course clipped just the most embarrassing moment in this slow-motion video. :\

Anyway, I'll post some questions about swarm prevention eventually, but at the moment I'm not even sure what to ask. I've already read probably 100 pages in books and blog posts and forums on the topic, but still can't seem to do it. It's been my only problem so far -- 100% overwintered, collected a little honey in the first year, etc.
 

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I would suggest using smaller hand branch cutters and a small hand saw over using a lopper. Most of my captures are made using the hand saw to cut the branch and walk the entire branch to the box where the lopper is used to trim up when the swarm is in the box. The lopper requires both hands. Also, if the swarm gets knocked off the branch, leave the branch alone for 5 minutes and let the bees return. Then, finish cutting the branch and carry the swarm carefully to the box.
 

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Congrats on the swarm capture. You did a great job and provided a good laugh. We have all been there. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah the fact that the loppers required two hands (or in my case, a hand and an armpit) was a clear problem. Then the tip of the branch broke right where I was holding it. In retrospect I would hold the fat end.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Hand saw and a taller ladder. I cut the whole top out of a holly tree recently to collect one of my swarms. Darn grape vines had things knotted up pretty good and it took awhile to get the top clear of the rest of the tree. Easy shake in after that.

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