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Here is a fun thought!

In learning about TF beekeeping I keep on concluding feral local colonies may be a great way to go. Before I go any further, I'd like to clarify I would rather capture swarms from a feral colony than to remove a feral colony. Anyhow, I think it would be fun to do some bee lining to find a feral colony. Just today I came across this very cool video "sky fishing for drones" (below). Then it occurred to me the same concept could be used with bee lining.

In short, Pick a day with little or no wind. You would setup some sugar syrup in something light (a sponge?) that would eventually be suspended from brightly colored hot air balloon(s). Once plenty of scout bees find the syrup you'd let the balloon(s) rise. Then you keep moving the balloon(s) every so often in the bee line direction until you find the hive. My guess is the bees will find the balloon(s) fairly quickly even as you keep moving them.

Others may wonder why a grown up is playing with hot air balloons in the middle of a field though. :D On the other hand, it could be a fun activity to do with the kids.


 

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One cheap fishing rod with a zebco 33 reel and 10 lb line with a balloon tied to the end. One sponge saturated in mint flavored sugar syrup. Find one bee on a flower and tempt it with the sponge. Leave the sponge where it is for an hour or so until plenty of bees are foraging. Let the fishing rod release the line so the balloon rises about 30 feet with sponge in tow. Now walk around whistling with a balloon tied to the end of your fishing rod and tell anyone who asks you are catching sky-fish out of the clouds using honeybees as bait. When they look at you like a loon, point at a couple of bream in a bucket and say you caught two already but they are not enough for a meal so you are still fishing. You will know it worked when three teenagers show up with their own balloons and fishing rods.
 

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GOOGLE "bee lining", or look at"http://northernwoodlands.org/articles/article/bee-lining-the-oldtimers-way-to-find-wild-beehives", or read Dr. Tom Seeley's new book entitled: "Following the Wild Bees".

Steve
 

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The balloon part seems unnecessary. Just put the sponge on a plate on the ground and bee-line the bees from there.

And, nothing wrong with putting swarm traps around a feral colony, but I'd say leave the feral colonies themselves alone, unless someone is cutting down their tree or tearing down their old house, etc.
 
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