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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Selling shovels to the gold-diggers was historically a successful business model.

Still, there are few honest BS members right here who do not sell books or the like - and yet they keep the bees quite successfully.
But the particular context of each and every case is important.

Speaking of "too late"..
In late August of 2016, I took a small swarm off a branch.
These ones (look at the conditions):
View attachment 55921
Hived them into a plywood trap hive and fed them straight sugar ('cause I had nothing else).
They overwintered OK.
And so the show went on ..
True enough. But I have to be a realist. Yes things "can" happen. But it is unlikely, especially for me. :)
I am not saying that I wouldn't welcome them if I were to see them, but I haven't seen a swarm in my life, much less in the past 6 years that I have lived here. I have 2 bait hives, in less than optimal positions and under less than optimal conditions. And like you, if i were to catch them, I would keep them in whatever I had on hand, and feed them whatever I could muster. But that is not a plan. That is an exceptional situation. Meanwhile I am just imagining the piles and piles of earwig pops piling up in there, and hopefully that is the worst of it.

If I am going to catch a swarm next year, it will likely be because I built traps and baited them and set them up the trees before swarm season, and got extremely lucky. I have no experiences around such things that allow me to determine a particular confidence level. So I can follow the conflicting advises and do my best and give it a shot. And/or budget to order a nuc and try to make something of it. But I honestly don't expect anything to happen this season, and without a workable, reasonable, sane plan for next season, there is little reason to pitch good money after bad.
 

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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

Absinte, don't just rely on the bait hives. Get your name out there for swarm removal. Get on https://beeremovalsource.com/ and on http://beelist.org and on any local lists you can find and on Facebook. Build your first hive box already so you can dump that first swarm in right away. It doesn't take much to collect a swarm off someone's backyard tree except a box to put them in. Keep a box in your trunk.

My spring time trunk contents:
  • A ProNuc,
  • A five gallon bucket with a flag pole bracket bolted to the bottom.
  • A telescoping painters extension pole to reach the higher swarms.
Lift the bucket up, give the branch a hard shake with it, and dump the bucket in a box. Credit for the idea goes to this beek not far from me. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ph6QKrWKTrc
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

Absinte, don't just rely on the bait hives. Get your name out there for swarm removal. Get on https://beeremovalsource.com/ and on http://beelist.org and on any local lists you can find and on Facebook. Build your first hive box already so you can dump that first swarm in right away. It doesn't take much to collect a swarm off someone's backyard tree except a box to put them in. Keep a box in your trunk.

My spring time trunk contents:
  • A ProNuc,
  • A five gallon bucket with a flag pole bracket bolted to the bottom.
  • A telescoping painters extension pole to reach the higher swarms.
Lift the bucket up, give the branch a hard shake with it, and dump the bucket in a box. Credit for the idea goes to this beek not far from me. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ph6QKrWKTrc
Sounds like a great idea and an awesome kit to have in one's car! I may consider it or something like it. I had initially decided that since I had such a ridiculously craptastical bad year, I was simply going to take a season off and come up with a plan. Re-evaluate what I have done wrong, and possibly build new equipment (because I was considering going horizontal) and all that. When I was asking for pointers on traps and bait hives, figuring that would be the strategy I was given the "Hey, just do it, with whatever you have, and do it now!" So I put the bait hives out. They are basically hive bodies full of used frames on a bottom board with a top and an inner cover. And a little bit of LGO. One is on one side of my house the other is on my current hive stand. I just don't have any confidence that they will do anything, especially since they are both pretty close to the ground. But I gave it a shot.

So, at this point, I am still planning for next season, this weekend, I am going to do some inventory and see how many of what I have in what condition. I will clean up, fix, and repaint where necessary and then decide what new equipment I will need to have a shot of success next season. Complete with an actual plan.

Thanks for the links, I will check them out and see if they fit in with what I can do.
 

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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

You'll never catch bees without drawn comb/ propolis, wax.
I catch several swarms a year and I do not use any comb or wax/propolis.
 

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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

Until I got some of these paraphernalia - "drawn comb/ propolis, wax" - never caught any.
Just my case, but this is also telling of the local situation somehow.

Does not matter for Absinthe, he should have plenty of "drawn comb/ propolis, wax" after 5 years.
 

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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

I just don't have any confidence that they will do anything, especially since they are both pretty close to the ground..
You have not been reading on swarm trapping experiences looks like.
Study odfrank, the ultimate swarm catcher.
:)

Case in point - my backyard right now.
Ground level bait hives get 90% of the attention.
The porch level baits just sitting there.
Go figure.
Last year it was the other way around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

Until I got some of these paraphernalia - "drawn comb/ propolis, wax" - never caught any.
Just my case, but this is also telling of the local situation somehow.

Does not matter for Absinthe, he should have plenty of "drawn comb/ propolis, wax" after 5 years.
yes, yes I do!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

You have not been reading on swarm trapping experiences looks like.
Study odfrank, the ultimate swarm catcher.
:)

Case in point - my backyard right now.
Ground level bait hives get 90% of the attention.
The porch level baits just sitting there.
Go figure.
Last year it was the other way around.
It was an opinion statement, and probably unfounded. I don't have any actual swarm experience. The next one I see in real life will be the first one ever. Neither of mine are getting any attention whatsoever. Because for 4 days straight now it has been raining non-stop. But that is besides the point, that when it wasn't raining, I haven't seen a scout, or even a bee working the flowers. But let me crack even a drop of sugar anywhere and I have robbers like crazy all over the place... If I could make a trap that could catch the robbers, I could probably add a Q and make a package :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

You have not been reading on swarm trapping experiences looks like.
Study odfrank, the ultimate swarm catcher.
:)

Case in point - my backyard right now.
Ground level bait hives get 90% of the attention.
The porch level baits just sitting there.
Go figure.
Last year it was the other way around.
There are some potential genetic factors in that...
 

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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

You'll never catch bees without drawn comb/ propolis, wax.
I catch several swarms a year and I do not use any comb or wax/propolis.
Your lucky, or there's a sorry beekeeper a mile away:) I never caught a thing till I put drawn comb in a box, but only in my 2nd year, I never even saw a scout bee without it.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

You'll never catch bees without drawn comb/ propolis, wax.
Not entirely true, but it does help, a lot. I have heavy scouting at a trap today that I just removed a swarm from last week. Hive still smells like bees. Propolis and wax remnants on the lid and a frame of drawn comb. Swarm Commander sprayed on the outside. Took four days and the last three have been raining. Trap is sitting on the ground under a large grapevine. First swarm I ever trapped was in the same location but was in brand new equipment with nothing but LGO to lure them in.

Absinthe, clean the trap if you are concerned about roaches, ants, and earwigs, but leave it in place. Swarms can occur throughout the summer and into early fall. Fall swarms can survive winter in the South, but they take a lot of coddling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

Not entirely true, but it does help, a lot. I have heavy scouting at a trap today that I just removed a swarm from last week. Hive still smells like bees. Propolis and wax remnants on the lid and a frame of drawn comb. Swarm Commander sprayed on the outside. Took four days and the last three have been raining. Trap is sitting on the ground under a large grapevine. First swarm I ever trapped was in the same location but was in brand new equipment with nothing but LGO to lure them in.

Absinthe, clean the trap if you are concerned about roaches, ants, and earwigs, but leave it in place. Swarms can occur throughout the summer and into early fall. Fall swarms can survive winter in the South, but they take a lot of coddling.
I won't bother them until the monsoon season ends and the temperature comes back up. I know it will fill up with earwigs, but they don't seem to do much wax damage. Perhaps they will stave off worse things like SHB and Wax Moths. I am guessing that I don't need 8 frames of comb in them actually? Just one, and the rest can be empty perhaps? Seems like having a bunch of drawn comb if it stays unoccupied for very long is essentially throwing away drawn comb. But I just "did something" without all the proper planning so there's that :) Probably should start a new thread on how to optimally setup a bait hive when not simply using the "Nike" style of "Just Do It!" And, when I get shop time, I can actually set them up.
 

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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

I guess i am lucky in catching swarms, as for a bad beekeeper in my area there is none. In my county there is not 10 beekeepers in the entire county. I live in a county that is 90% pine plantations and 10% open land. All I use is a wooden box that is the size of a 10 frame deep, it is hung 3 foot off the ground and has a q tip dipped in Swarm Commander. And I do not put any frames in the box.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

You just need one frame of drawn comb. The rest can be foundationless frames. I know you are familiar with Dr. Leo's website. The traps I use are built from the plans he provides. https://horizontalhive.com/how-to-build/swarm-trap-free-plans.shtml.
For a few dollars, you can build seven of these and have a good shot at having bees next year, even if this year does not pan out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

How do you keep the earwigs out of it?, mine have 100 in em.
Who are you asking this of? I am sure I have 2 hive boxes full of earwigs. Other than all their little poops I don't think they cause any problems. I hear they eat varoa, but not having any bees, I probably don't have any varoa either. I have a bunch of frames worth of old dark drawn comb, that I would prefer they not eat, but it doesn't have honey or pollen in it, so I doubt they will hurt it. If SHB or wax moths get in there though I am pretty sure I can could them as a loss though.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Re: Does dong a bunch of walk away Nuc splits count as queen rearing?

I am not sure if the bees care if there are earwigs in the hive or not. I had a swarm trap that had ants in it. The bees were on one side, the ants on the other. I do not check inside the traps once they are placed so I have no idea how many earwigs might be inside.
 
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