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Anyone got any good ideas, pictures, info, etc. on best way to rig up nucs to hang in trees for bait hives ? I would be very grateful, would like to do this without harming my trees. Thank you.

Best,

casper_zip
 

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I make a pair of inverted, braced, L-frame brackets from scrap wood and ratchet strap them to trees. The [foundationless] trap sits on top of the flat part of the brackets, with a shim or two to level it.



(No trees were harmed in the swarm trap mounting process. :D)
 

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I use a french cleat. The screws/nails won't harm the tree at all. Graham's idea is one I have been looking forward to using. Once I have more ratchet straps than hives, I'll use his method.
 

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I've had statistically significant greater "catch" factor ( p >=0.001) with traps larger than a 5 frame nuc.

As a matter of course, I make bait hives out of two nucs stacked double. I now either use a medium depth nuc on top or two deeps (frames only in upper nuc). I use 1 or 2 old brood frames and other frames are variously plastic or wired foundationless. No statistical difference in the medium+ deep vs. deep + deep combo. No statistical difference between open frames, plastic frames or number of old brood frames.

Double nucs are a pain to secure --- a scab of wood diagonally, a strap with a binding tension, or hive staples are variously used. The increased size is definitely worth it, however due the much better catch. Swarms usually congest in the upper box, and the empty bottom box can be stripped off when the swarm is retrieved.

Most of my trap boxes are simply placed on the ground. I am in California chaparral and coastal sage scrub, so the bees are used to low habitat. No statistical difference in position of box (ground vs. tree crotch). Cannot really test it (too many variables), but good trapping near the dripline of an isolated tree (theory that this makes navigation to the bait easy).
 

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I found a fairly easy method that works really great for me and it's quick. I nail a 1x4 "handle" on the side of my nuc in the middle in the vertical position extending up above the hive trap about 16". I drill a hole about 1 1/4" diameter near the top of that handle so I can hang it on a small branch that has been lopped off a foot or so long. Or I drive a 60d spike or gutter spike in the tree as high as I can reach and hang the handle over that nail thru the hole. Then when I get the bees, all I have to do is lift the box off the nail and bingo! I have an empty one with me to hang right back on the nail. I also carry a roll of perforated plumbers galvanized strap if I need to screw an extra bit of support to keep the box steady in the wind. Or sometimes I'll use a small rope or rubber cargo strap to secure it from wind. Once you get this method rolling, it works easy and fast. I've caught 5 swarms so far this spring and it's kinda fun.
 

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I have caught about 30 this year, none set higher that I can reach from the ground. Height might give you some advantage but not enough to spend time and money achieving.
 

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My tree just happened to have an area where branches crossed near a main branch of the trunk. We wedged the nuc trap in there, making sure it was level, and didn't even tie it in - it was very stable even with critters running over it. It has caught 2 big swarms this year and would catch more if we would put it back up. The bees have prefered it over the other locations when they have had a choice.
 

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I found a fairly easy method that works really great for me and it's quick. I nail a 1x4 "handle" on the side of my nuc in the middle in the vertical position extending up above the hive trap about 16". I drill a hole about 1 1/4" diameter near the top of that handle so I can hang it on a small branch that has been lopped off a foot or so long. Or I drive a 60d spike or gutter spike in the tree as high as I can reach and hang the handle over that nail thru the hole. Then when I get the bees, all I have to do is lift the box off the nail and bingo! I have an empty one with me to hang right back on the nail. I also carry a roll of perforated plumbers galvanized strap if I need to screw an extra bit of support to keep the box steady in the wind. Or sometimes I'll use a small rope or rubber cargo strap to secure it from wind. Once you get this method rolling, it works easy and fast. I've caught 5 swarms so far this spring and it's kinda fun.
Yours sounds a lot like mine:
 

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All you have to do here is put them on your hive stand or on a deck or roof. Up to 12 so far on hive stands near my other hives and two on my roof. I tried hanging them on trees a couple of years ago and got nothing.
 

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Homesteader, that's exactly like the tree hanger I use and it is easy to use. I think I got the idea a while back from watching a youtube video. I have read the other posts on this thread about catching more swarms than I have, but I just didn't have any success in my neck of the woods with the ones I put on stands, platforms, etc. Maybe it's just my small number of traps that worked out that way, but since the tree hanger is working best here in my area, I'll probably do most of mine that way till I find something that works better. I am open to experimentation.
 
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