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Author Topic: What size for swarm traps?  (Read 2790 times)

Offline gardeningfireman

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What size for swarm traps?
« on: April 11, 2011, 10:29:20 AM »
I need to build some swarm traps pretty soon. I have plans for traps that are the size of a 5-frame nuc. That seems to be too small for a good size swarm to want to move into(ie no room for potential colony growth). A trap the size of a brood box would be pretty awkward to handle. Last year I built a few boxes slightly narrower than a brood box and scouts showed interest in them but no swarms ever moved in. What is the most successful size swarm trap?

Offline Tommyt

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2011, 11:51:54 AM »
Take your 5 frame plan make them and stack so you have 10
I myself have been thinking the 5 frame looks small
I built Dcoates plans and left the bottom off one
I just put 2 small pieces of wood to keep it square
Then screwed together
I don't have it here or I'd take a picture for you

Good luck
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Offline VolunteerK9

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2011, 01:34:55 PM »
But on the flip side of the coin, I caught a couple of swarms in five frame mediums last year. Ive got both hung right now-deeps and mediums, only time will tell.

Offline gardeningfireman

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2011, 02:48:39 PM »
Thanks for the ideas! I like the idea of stacking two 5-frame boxes. That way after swarm season, I can convert them back to regular nucs.

Offline Michael Bush

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2011, 01:02:07 AM »
Lemongrass essential oil stacks the deck more than size, but a ten frame deep (or two eight frame mediums) is about the right volume to be optimal for attracting a swarm.  I've had good luck, though with five frame deeps and single eight frame mediums.
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Offline BjornBee

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2011, 08:12:35 AM »
Here are some tips......

10 things to consider for swarm trap success

Honey Bees…..

* prefer a swarm trap (colony location) about 8 to 15 feet off the ground.

* will disregard a trap with light coming in from above.

* prefer a trap equivalent to a cavity size slightly larger than a deep brood

* will select sites in the afternoon shade. They may abandon a site within a
   few days if in full sun and heat is an issue.

* prefer bait hives with entrances facing south.

* prefer a entrance towards the bottom of the cavity.

* prefer a unobstructed flight path from the entrance.

* will not take up residence in a bait hive that has other insects in them.
   Keep them free of wasps, yellow jackets, etc.

* prefer a bait hive that is dry.

* prefer a previously used site that has a honey bee smell of old comb, or
   one that has baited with bee scent.

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Northern States Queen Breeders Assoc.  www.nsqba.com

Offline CapnChkn

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2011, 01:04:38 PM »
I have yet to actually catch any swarms, but I have built some bait hives.  I worried myself over the size of the cavity until I just decided if the things didn't catch a swarm, I would have a whole bunch of ugly wooden boxes laying around without being used.  I'm using the Dcoates 5 frame Nuc design.

Bjorn, I have been trying to get some bees to notice my swarm traps.  They seem to be attracting:
  • Wasps
  • Mice
  • Some bees around what I realized now is the old Honey House
  • And Roaches.
I can understand keeping the Wasps and Mice out, but will the Roaches make all the fastidious bees go "ewww!" and go look for a different place?  They don't seem to want to get in the comb, these are a smaller version of what we used to call "Palmetto bugs" down in Florida.  They seem to be hanging out on the bottom board, enjoying the dark.
"Thinking is like sin, them that doesn't is scairt of it, and them that does gets to liking it so much they can't quit!"  -Josh Billings.

Offline James M. Wagner

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2013, 03:04:01 PM »
I've used Coates-style nucs as traps before to no avail. This year, I am trying the same but with a medium super added. I plan to set some out with a deep super added.

Has anyone ever experimented with using a nuc plus a medium super vs a nuc plus a deep super? If so, what are/were your results? Recommendations?


-James Wagner
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Offline bailey

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2013, 03:15:49 PM »
I hang medium dcoats nucs and catch a lot.
most often i find my greatest source of stress to be OPS  ( other peoples stupidity )

It is better to keep ones mouth shut and be thought of as a fool than to open ones mouth and in so doing remove all doubt.

Offline Robo

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Re: What size for swarm traps?
« Reply #9 on: April 21, 2013, 04:19:47 PM »
Last year I put out a pair of swarm traps in 11 different locations.  Each location had a 20 litre and 30 litre volume trap within 2 feet of each other.   I caught 9 swarms in these locations and 8 out of the 9 chose the 30 litre trap.   

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