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Hey there! This is my first year to attempt expanding my bee yard by capturing a swarm. I setup three traps made of card board nuc boxes I had laying around with two frames of drawn comb and three new frames with foundation. I taped a pheromone lure from Mann Lake to the inside top of the box. These traps were all placed near a friends family farm house that is abandoned and has been colonized by bees for the last 40 years. I figured they may swarm and within two weeks of placing the traps one is now full of bees.

I have a couple quick questions.

1. Pheromone Removal Post Swarm Capture
For those not familiar with Mann Lake's swarm lure, it is a manilla envelope, maybe 3"x5" with 1-2 small plastic viles of swarm lure. After opening the trap I noticed the the entire manilla envelope is gone, the tape is gone, part of the cardboard top is chewed where the lure envelope was taped, and the viles have fallen and are resting between the tops of two frames. My question is, should I now remove these viles and is this normal for the envelope to have been totally obliterated by the swarm? I have not rehived the swarm in to my hive body, and therefore haven't inspected for a queen yet.

2. Feeding
Do any of you feed a swarm after transferring to hive body?

3. Moving
In moving my swarm, how detrimental is it to loose a portion of my field bees by moving the trap around 5-6pm, while there is still some but reduced activity in and out of the trap...because of the rural location a distance from home it is sort of inconvenient to close and move the nuc after all activity has settled down for the day.
 

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Well I usually dont keep in envelope. But yes remove vials and feed them like crazy fast comb builders. If you have to move them then thats the way it is. Stop and have a piece of pie to kill some time or buy some flowers.
 

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>I taped a pheromone lure from Mann Lake to the inside top of the box.
I have tried many store bought lures and found at best they are equal to LGO.
Most of the plastic container don't release the pheromone, I have lures that are 3-4 years old and still have that same level of pheromones in them. I catch the same amount of swarm lures vs LGO. Probably because of brood comb.

The BEST thing you can do to increase your chances are use dark brood comb. Even small pieces from a cutout will make a big difference.

>My question is, should I now remove these viles and is this normal for the envelope to have been totally obliterated by the swarm?
I won't not hurt to leave it there, I usually remove it when I move the frames/bees to a hive. It's normal for bees to chew paper and cardboard up.

>Do any of you feed a swarm after transferring to hive body?
It's usually during a flow when you catch swarms, I wait until late summer and feed for winter survival.

>how detrimental is it to loose a portion of my field bees by moving the trap around 5-6pm
I get them first thing in the morning or right after dark, it may not matter but often you catch some smaller swarms and every bit may make a difference.
 

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>I have tried many store bought lures and found at best they are equal to LGO.
Most of the plastic container don't release the pheromone, I have lures that are 3-4 years old and still have that same level of pheromones in them. I catch the same amount of swarm lures vs LGO. Probably because of brood comb.

The BEST thing you can do to increase your chances are use dark brood comb. Even small pieces from a cutout will make a big difference.


Hey FlowerPlanter, first thanks for the great response. Second, what is LGO? I'm sure that's a naive question. Maybe my Mann Lake lure had nothing to do with the success and and it was the older drawn brood comb that did the trick. Again thanks for the input.

If it finally stops raining here I'm going to get them moved over to a hive, will take the lure vials out then, and will probably wait to feed until later in the year as we seem to have a pretty good nectar flow going already...

-Freestate
 

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I will occasionally feed the ones I get, but I'm shaking them off of branches and brushing them off fence posts. Not "trapping" them. Or at least haven't had any luck trapping them yet.
Not that it should make a difference.

I typically give them about 1/2 to 1 quart. But I have given them none before and not real difference. I figure if the weather isn't favorable for a few days they maybe need a little help. This last one I've actually refilled the quart, but only because I had some 1:1 I need to use that I'd mixed up for mating nucs and ended up not needing.

They're bringing in pollen at 6:30 in the morning, though, not sure how much help they really need. And the hive is in full shade too, so it's not like the early morning sun is getting them moving.
 
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