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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I really enjoy catching local swarms, and have done it for free in the past. I have also, at times got so many swarms that I had to start referring calls to other beeks, because all of my equipment was full. Here is my idea...

I can start charging a small fee to remove swarms. Capture them in 5 frame wooden nucs, and sell them. Would there be a market for "freshly caught swarms" in a wooden nuc box. I don't feel It would be ethical to sell them as nucs, due to the fact they have very little wax, no brood and are just a bunch of bees with a queen. (I'd guess I get the queen 95% of the time or more) I usually leave the swarm box overnight and pick it up early the next morning before bees start flying.

So, would anyone buy captured swarms? Who could I sell them to? Our swarm season here is right around Memorial weekend. Is there enough people wanting to get into the hobby late in the season after all the packages are gone and swarm season is over?
 

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Kinda a jerk move to charge to capture the swarm, then turn around and sell it. But I'm generally against charging for swarm capture anyway.

If I were you I'd put the captured swarm in a nuc box, feed it, and let it sit for a few weeks. Once they have built up a bit of comb, put it for sale on craigslist. I think you could easily sell it for $100 (woodenware included) or $50 (no woodenware). Just disclose that it's a captured swarm. There are plenty of people that want to get involved but can't afford a new nuc or package. Check the items wanted section, I see posts all the day from people who are looking for cheap equipment, cheap bees, ect.
 

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Kinda a jerk move :rolleyes: to charge to capture the swarm, then turn around and sell it. But I'm generally against charging for swarm capture anyway.
Budster seems pretty concerned about NOT taking advantage of people. At least as I read the post. As far as the questions.... time will tell.
 

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I think what you'd want to do is wait until there's some drawn comb and verify that the queen is, indeed, laying. Then I'd charge something like $20/drawn frame (w/ brood) + $20 for the queen + equipment.
 

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i say charge a small fee - and resale -

there choice it to pay a small fee( usually gas and a hand shake)
or pay the exterminater $100 to come out and tell you that you have bees and them its $45hr whlie he trys to remember where he left his ladder.

but to feel guilt for selling a nuc of swarmed bees - i would never feel guilty to make a living-

besides the nuc cost money - your time cost you money so why on earth should you give it away -

i mean really it like .....since i own a chainsaw ....i should cut everyones firewood for free - .....since i know how to ???

im in favor of selling the swarms !!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Many beekeepers charge for swarm removal. Especially cut outs! I've always done it free. Gasoline, getting home from work and the wife says "dinners done" and I say "gotta go, theres a swarm waiting", driving out 20 miles to find wasps, yellow jackets and hornets... They tell you the swarm is 6 feet off the ground when its 20 feet up a tree with power lines running through it, you ask how big the swarm is and they tell you its freaking huge to find a quart of bees, etc

I've had several people insist I take money for swarm removal when I did it free. I tell them no twice or three times and there still shoving a $20 bill towards me...

I'm not mad or anything, but I feel "Jerk" might have been well above and beyond the call of duty...
 

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Just a thought you could also purchase some of the cardboard nucs and sell them that way. It will get folks bees even cheaper and they will have to transfer them to a hive either way.
 

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I'm not mad or anything, but I feel "Jerk" might have been well above and beyond the call of duty...
Maybe . . . but then again if you are coming to remove a swarm when it is an inconvenience to an individual, and they are willing to pay you (or even demanding to pay you), there may be nothing wrong with that. But if you are going to talk about how you spend so much time getting the swarm, driving, paying for gas or whatnot, if you are already planning on selling it anyway, how much reimbursement do you need? To charge on one end is fine, or to charge on the other end is fine. To charge on both ends (both capturing the swarm and selling the swarm) I feel that is just taking advantage of the situation, taking advantage of individuals who are trying to do the right thing and not get a can of raid.

I'm not against an individual being reimbursed for the time and equipment they put into getting a swarm, but if you are going to sell it anyway, why do you need to charge the person who you are taking the swarm from?

But this isn't a new topic. I've been over this plenty of times on here. I know people want to charge to pick up a swarm. Go for it. Morally it isn't right to me. But hey, that's me.
 

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Whether or not I charge for a swarm depends on how much time I have. (I typically don't have much time and if I take time to get it, I'm losing money from my regular job. I have a 4 kids to feed).

I typically charge $150 for a swarm on a branch or some similar location, and $175/hr for a wall removal, $250 if I bring a carpenter. I put the bees in my apiary. Does that make me a bad guy? The exterminators, who won't kill the bees, start at $300 to remove anything at all, so I don't think twice about charging. My time is valuable.

In May, when I'm all excited that the season is starting in earnest, I do it for free...I just can't help myself.

I wouldn't hesitate to sell the swarm. When you buy a package its an artificial swarm. When you buy an established nuc, its an established colony. My only thought would be the age of the queen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Was this your post?

I've contemplated buying a 'beginner kit' and turning around and selling it on ebay, making $50 each in the process.
 

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There is nothing wrong with making money, there is your time in getting the swarm your time IS WORTH MONEY, being away from your family IS WORTH MONEY, gas money, equipment, the people who complain about charging must be rich don't forget we are provide service for people.
 

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>Kinda a jerk move to charge to capture the swarm, then turn around and sell it.

Remarks like this are, unfortunately, too common on forums nowadays. When you are sitting at a keyboard typing insults at people with no fear of repercussions, that tells me something about the person doing it. Regardless of how you may have handled the situation about removing a swarm, you were totally out of line to say what you said.
 

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I don't know that there is a big market for newly boxed swarms, but I think its worth a try. I dont see a difference in selling a newly caught swarm or selling a nuc off a swarm captured the year before. In certain cases I charge to capture swarms based on time and how hard I have to work, others I spend 2 minutes to knock them off a branch into a box and head home...no charge...but that swarm will be makin money for me in one way or another...splits for sale or honey in the bottle. Go forth and be industrious :thumbsup:
 

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So, would anyone buy captured swarms? Who could I sell them to? Our swarm season here is right around Memorial weekend. Is there enough people wanting to get into the hobby late in the season after all the packages are gone and swarm season is over?
I would actually recommend holding onto them over the summer and selling later in the year when nothing else is available, your bees have some comb built, and beekeepers are thinking about how many colonies they have that can be built up enough to work out in Californa in the next Amond season.
 

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i say charge a small fee - and resale -

there choice it to pay a small fee( usually gas and a hand shake)
or pay the exterminater $100 to come out and tell you that you have bees and them its $45hr whlie he trys to remember where he left his ladder.

but to feel guilt for selling a nuc of swarmed bees - i would never feel guilty to make a living-

besides the nuc cost money - your time cost you money so why on earth should you give it away -

i mean really it like .....since i own a chainsaw ....i should cut everyones firewood for free - .....since i know how to ???

im in favor of selling the swarms !!!!

I totally agree with concrete. In addition to what he said- time is money!

Kingfisher
 

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Maybe . . . but then again if you are coming to remove a swarm when it is an inconvenience to an individual, and they are willing to pay you (or even demanding to pay you), there may be nothing wrong with that. But if you are going to talk about how you spend so much time getting the swarm, driving, paying for gas or whatnot, if you are already planning on selling it anyway, how much reimbursement do you need? To charge on one end is fine, or to charge on the other end is fine. To charge on both ends (both capturing the swarm and selling the swarm) I feel that is just taking advantage of the situation, taking advantage of individuals who are trying to do the right thing and not get a can of raid.

I'm not against an individual being reimbursed for the time and equipment they put into getting a swarm, but if you are going to sell it anyway, why do you need to charge the person who you are taking the swarm from?

But this isn't a new topic. I've been over this plenty of times on here. I know people want to charge to pick up a swarm. Go for it. Morally it isn't right to me. But hey, that's me.
... and what if he charges the little old lady $20.00 to get rid of the swarm and charges a new beek $20.00 for the nuc? Wouldn't that help two people out? ... so morally it isn't right to judge him is it?
 

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I see nothing wrong about charging for swarm removal and reselling the captured swarm. Everybody is happy about the transactions, so what is the problem.

If someone doesn't want payment, then simply decline and ask that they pay it forward to another needy person.
 

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There is high demand for prime swarms by comb honey producers. Swarms are comb drawing machines.

Get to know local comb honey producers, and make a contact list so you can call them when you have a prime swarm available. Comb honey producers may not have the time to go chase swarms, but are willing to pay for swarms. (and desperately want them too)

Nothing wrong with putting them in a nuc box and selling them, but remember that you are supposed to be inspected before you can sell bees on combs or any used equipment.
 

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I agree that using labels that offend people, like jerk or stupid, in a public forum is not a good practice. Especially, if you want to persuade people to your way of thinking. It also tells a lot about the intelligence and/or the character of the speaker but if you can see through the offense there is often something to be gained.

So if you are attempting to bring someone to your way of thinking, i.e. providing a service to remove swarms or charging for them or if one method of beekeeping is better than the other, it is best to not offend. The subject then changes and you are now talking about the offense and not the practice.

I don't think it is bad or wrong to charge or not to charge for swarm removal either way is fine.

I also think there would be a market for captured swarms. Especially, if they were held until "off season" for package bees. But then there would be other concerns. i.e. will they survive the transport and/or the location change.
 

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The beautiful thing about capitialism is there is a market for everything! What's a newly captured swarm worth? Why, exactly what someone is willing to pay you for it! Just be perfectly honest in what it is that you are selling. As for charging for swarm removal...you'll be competing against others willing to do it for "free" so they can build up their bee yards (like me!) I say go for it! The invisable hand of the market will guide you!
 
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