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Author Topic: Attracting Swarms  (Read 5796 times)
mjdtexan
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« on: January 10, 2010, 12:12:57 PM »

I agree!! I wouldn't be able to afford to keep bees at all, if I had to buy hive equipment. I've made a few simple top-bar hives, and I do mean simple; rudimentary. Got bees free by attracting a few swarms. First year, so not a lot of honey (yet), but we do have a little fresh comb on the table now and then. It's a nice perk!

I was reading old TBH post and I saw Cheryl mention that she had attracted swarms. I would like to hear more about that process if yall dont mind.
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Wine Maker
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Grandma_DOG
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« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2010, 02:09:47 PM »

Luring is about 70% chemistry, 20% comb, 10% location

1. You can buy chemical lures. Or use Lemon Grass oil, about 5 drops on a single sheet of toilet paper. Stick that in a zip lock bag but don't seal it. Put it in the hive.  Reapply every month.
2. Take a piece of old dark comb and put it in the hive as well. Do not have any honey in it.
3. Place the bait hive 6-8 feet off the ground. Put near earlier swarms have been found. If you don't know of any pick a spot near open field/woods transition. This is more art than science, but the common thought is to find landmark locations scout bees would use for navigation.

-mt

I agree!! I wouldn't be able to afford to keep bees at all, if I had to buy hive equipment. I've made a few simple top-bar hives, and I do mean simple; rudimentary. Got bees free by attracting a few swarms. First year, so not a lot of honey (yet), but we do have a little fresh comb on the table now and then. It's a nice perk!

I was reading old TBH post and I saw Cheryl mention that she had attracted swarms. I would like to hear more about that process if yall dont mind.
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mjdtexan
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Location: Houston(ish) Texas

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« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2010, 02:32:43 PM »

Luring is about 70% chemistry, 20% comb, 10% location

1. You can buy chemical lures. Or use Lemon Grass oil, about 5 drops on a single sheet of toilet paper. Stick that in a zip lock bag but don't seal it. Put it in the hive.  Reapply every month.
2. Take a piece of old dark comb and put it in the hive as well. Do not have any honey in it.
3. Place the bait hive 6-8 feet off the ground. Put near earlier swarms have been found. If you don't know of any pick a spot near open field/woods transition. This is more art than science, but the common thought is to find landmark locations scout bees would use for navigation.

-mt

I agree!! I wouldn't be able to afford to keep bees at all, if I had to buy hive equipment. I've made a few simple top-bar hives, and I do mean simple; rudimentary. Got bees free by attracting a few swarms. First year, so not a lot of honey (yet), but we do have a little fresh comb on the table now and then. It's a nice perk!

I was reading old TBH post and I saw Cheryl mention that she had attracted swarms. I would like to hear more about that process if yall dont mind.
So It would be better to build two TBH's, buy my first set of bees and put the other TBH out and try my luck at attracting a seconds set of bees?
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Wine Maker
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Interested in Hot Peppers
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bigbearomaha
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« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2010, 03:14:50 PM »

This year, I will be making nuc sized tbh's ( just big enough to hold maybe 10 top bars or so) to place in the forest and other places as bait hives.  That way, if a swarm inhabits it,  I can simply swap the top bars into a full sized tbh afterwards.  I know there are some who use nuc sized langs same way.

Big Bear
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Grandma_DOG
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« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2010, 03:17:41 PM »

For swarm traps, just a 6 sided box would work. Build 6-10 of these.  If you catch something, then put  it in your TBH.  Your odds are low of catching in a single TBH.
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David LaFerney
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« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2010, 05:59:40 PM »

You would probably have a better chance of getting some bees if you put an ad in local online classifieds for free swarm removal.
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"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." Samuel Clemens

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JP
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I like doing cut-outs, but I love catching swarms!


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« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2010, 09:19:09 PM »

You would probably have a better chance of getting some bees if you put an ad in local online classifieds for free swarm removal.

As David mentioned and also join a local bee club and put your name on their swarm catching list. Once they get to know you, I'm sure they would be glad to throw some calls your way.

You can also call or stop by (stopping by is better) police stations and fire stations and tell them you are willing and able to collect swarms.


...JP
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Grandma_DOG
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Build it, and they will comb.


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« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2010, 11:41:58 PM »

You would probably have a better chance of getting some bees if you put an ad in local online classifieds for free swarm removal.

As David mentioned and also join a local bee club and put your name on their swarm catching list. Once they get to know you, I'm sure they would be glad to throw some calls your way.

You can also call or stop by (stopping by is better) police stations and fire stations and tell them you are willing and able to collect swarms.


...JP

I haven't had much luck on my local club swarm list. I think I'll call the Ag extention agent this year for it, instead.
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bigbearomaha
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« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2010, 10:26:48 AM »

That's what I did.  I am listed with the local county react as a beekeeper willing to take care of bee calls.

Bee careful though.

after awhile, anything that flies and stings will get sent your  way.  can't tell you how many calls that ended up as yellow jackets came my way over last year.

Big Bear
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JP
The Swarm King
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Location: Metairie, Louisiana

I like doing cut-outs, but I love catching swarms!


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« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2010, 10:38:29 AM »

That's what I did.  I am listed with the local county react as a beekeeper willing to take care of bee calls.

Bee careful though.

after awhile, anything that flies and stings will get sent your  way.  can't tell you how many calls that ended up as yellow jackets came my way over last year.

Big Bear



This is where screening your calls scrupulously over the phone really comes in handy & can often eliminate wasted trips out.

I often in fact ask the customer if they can send me a picture of what they are seeing, if of course it doesn't put them in harm's way.

I only do this of course on the ones that are a good drive away.

I did one just this past season, an hour drive away. It wound up being a hornet's nest (which I took care of). They had sent me very clear pictures to my computer. They had assumed they were honeybees.


...JP
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"Good friends are as sweet as honey" Winne the Pooh

My pictures can be viewed at http://picasaweb.google.com/pyxicephalus
and
http://picasaweb.google.com/112138792165178452970

My Youtube videos can be viewed here: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=JPthebeeman&aq=f

My website JPthebeeman.com http://www.jpthebeeman.com/jpthebeeman/
bigbearomaha
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« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2010, 11:56:26 AM »

Yes, sometimes, a person calling isn't too distressed to give an accurate description or knows enough to tell the difference.

Some people also do have a computer to send photos with.

But not all.

Sometimes, despite asking very detailed questions and talking people down from a phobic emotional state, you might get to the site and things aren't as they were described.

One definitely should ask detailed, questions to get the best mental picture of the situation before hopping in the truck and running out there.

Once in a while though, the little turkeys get ya anyway.

Big Bear

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JP
The Swarm King
Universal Bee
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Gender: Male
Posts: 11668


Location: Metairie, Louisiana

I like doing cut-outs, but I love catching swarms!


WWW
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2010, 03:55:56 PM »

Yes, sometimes, a person calling isn't too distressed to give an accurate description or knows enough to tell the difference.

Some people also do have a computer to send photos with.

But not all.

Sometimes, despite asking very detailed questions and talking people down from a phobic emotional state, you might get to the site and things aren't as they were described.

One definitely should ask detailed, questions to get the best mental picture of the situation before hopping in the truck and running out there.

Once in a while though, the little turkeys get ya anyway.

Big Bear



Very true. I've also been on a few that fooled me at first sight, that turned out to be yellow jackets.


...JP
Logged

"Good friends are as sweet as honey" Winne the Pooh

My pictures can be viewed at http://picasaweb.google.com/pyxicephalus
and
http://picasaweb.google.com/112138792165178452970

My Youtube videos can be viewed here: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=JPthebeeman&aq=f

My website JPthebeeman.com http://www.jpthebeeman.com/jpthebeeman/
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