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Author Topic: Swarm Trap Size  (Read 5027 times)
Bee-Mover
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« on: November 22, 2013, 08:18:55 PM »

So, I'd like some input if my thoughts are half-cocked. 

I intend to put together some swarm traps this winter in preparation for the spring.  My thought is to make them out of standard hive bodies with a 'trap door' on them that I can slide closed to move the whole thing when they're caught.  This will allow me to close them in, move them to their new location and then add more hive part to them without disturbing them too much.

I plan to use a frame or two of drawn comb, the rest with just foundation and bait with lemongrass essential oil.

thoughts?
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Moots
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« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2013, 08:26:50 PM »

I'd think a piece of drawn comb or one frame would be sufficient...not sure that two frames of drawn comb would do anything more for you than one.  Also, I've been told not to place foundation in the remaining frames but to leave them empty...The argument being that if you use foundation it makes the available space seem too small to the scout bees.

Good Luck!  Smiley
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HammerGa
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« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2013, 10:57:07 PM »

I am new to beekeeping and just going on what I have learned, not experience. I am going to make my traps deeps just because I know I want more deeps and I want to crank out the same size boxes. That just seems quicker and easier to cut a bunch of pieces at the same time. I am not going to use drawn frames just because I wonder if that it not asking for wax moth problems.
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bud1
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« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2013, 06:05:34 PM »

a deep is pretty heavy to hoist up a tree and even heavier when it has bees in it letting it down
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« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2013, 07:14:15 PM »

I'd think a piece of drawn comb or one frame would be sufficient...not sure that two frames of drawn comb would do anything more for you than one.  Also, I've been told not to place foundation in the remaining frames but to leave them empty...The argument being that if you use foundation it makes the available space seem too small to the scout bees.

Good Luck!  Smiley

Hadn't thought about that, thanks for the tip!
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OldMech
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« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2013, 09:26:36 PM »


  Indeed, a deep is a pain when its loaded with bees...
   i stopped putting my boxes UP in trees.. I put them as high as I can comfortably reach, but a deep full of bees is still difficult when trying to support it with one hand and get the screws out/ ratchet strap off with the other hand....

   I use all mediums, so tried different things.. a 5 frame med nuc, an 8 frame med box, and a ten frame med box..   I have yet to catch anything in the 5 frame box. Eight and ten have both yielded results..  The ten frame is cumbersome to deal with, so I built more 8 frame boxes for this year..   If you use deeps, the 5 frame DEEP box is about the same size as the 8 frame medium..  I also use foundation-less I dont know how much difference it will make, but the empty frames may make it look more spacious.. I add two frames to the box to split it up a little, and hopefully keep them from drawing cross comb if I dont check it for a couple weeks.   I tried drawn comb but the wax moths usually had a field day in it, so use plastic PF 120's (small cell) from Mann Lake undrawn instead.
   So far, swarm lure and lemon grass oil seem to have a similar effect..  I buy the swam lure just because I dont want to take any chances on a miss..  I normally put the swarm lure in, and put a few dabs of the lemongrass near the entrance..    Didnt have enough lure this spring so used lemongrass alone in four traps and had two swarms in them, and two swarms in the lure prepped boxes...

   use the frames you want to go with, as you said, DEEPS.. so all you have to do is swap them into your normal brood box.. I TRY, to leave them alone in their box for about a week..  In that time they will draw a LOT of comb.. so far only one of them has made a mess that required doing a lot of cutting to get them hived.  Letting them get comb going and eggs laid will help root them to the frames you put in the new hive.

   I am still torn about the drawn comb..  I am SURE it would be a lure to them, but at the same time, if Wax moths move in before the scouts get there, it may also be a deterrent to them. I tried freezing the frames before I put them in, but still had about half the frames/boxes all webbed up when I finally did open them...
    Once a box has been occupied by bees, its effectiveness increases.  As I begin replacing old boxes I intend to cut them down into swarm boxes.. If you know any beeks who have been at it a few years, you might be able to talk them out of a couple deeps in need of repair to cut down for your traps.
   The bottoms of mine are nailed in place, the tops screwed so they can be removed. I make a notch in the front board a little bigger than an inch and 3/8 high..   some folks like bigger entrances, but they also usually have to cross nail them to keep birds mice etc out of them.

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« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2013, 04:11:45 AM »

Great information, thank you!
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capt44
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« Reply #7 on: November 25, 2013, 09:53:51 PM »

When I build a new box for swarm traps or hives I will burn a sheet of newspaper inside the box to do away with that new smell.
It also makes the lemon grass oil stand out more.
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Richard Vardaman (capt44)
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« Reply #8 on: November 26, 2013, 02:00:01 PM »

I would forgo using foundation.   Swarms are anxious to build comb by instinct.   I have found that old comb is the best lure you can use. If you plan to put out a lot of traps, using regular bee equipment can become expensive.  I prefer to use dedicated traps made out on 3/8 ply.   Here is my swarm trap experience -> http://beevac.com/swarm-traps/

« Last Edit: November 26, 2013, 09:38:54 PM by Robo » Logged

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danno
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« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2013, 03:55:48 PM »

I have dedicated swarm traps.   I built them with luan tops bottoms and sides and 1X pine for the ends.  They are all five frame size with 3 drawn frames in the center.   For entrances I simply drill a 3/4 hole in the bottom front.  I preassemble these at the end of winter and staple a small pc of #8 wire over the entrance.   They are very light and easy to hang.   I dont use ladders so the highest they get hung is about 7 or 8 ft in shady areas at the edges of fields on the up wind sides.  I simply hang them and pop the staple out of the wire over the entrance and bend it down so it works for a small front porch and add a few drops of lemon grass.  When they make catches I simply restaple the wire back over the hole and take they down.     
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tefer2
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« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2013, 08:50:12 AM »

My best luck comes from deep boxes with medium frames installed.
We use one frame of old drawn comb filling the box with foundation.
I like to add a Q-tip dipped into lemongrass oil and dead queen juice.
It's easy to tell when a swarm moves in cause they throw the Q-tip out on the ground.
All I have to do it add a top and bottom to some old deeps and I'm done.
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danno
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« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2013, 01:28:46 PM »

Take a look at my facebook page for "Ludington honey"    It has a ton of pics of swarm trapping and catching.   I catch really big swarms in five frame boxes as the pic will show.   Maybe I would catch more if I use larger boxes.  Who knows but my % of traps to swarms has always been very high. My reason for using 3 frames in a 5 frame box started because I didn't have enough drawn frames to fill traps.   I now use 3 because I believe I catch bigger swarms because of the extra room.   They do always start building comb in the empty spaces but I believe this just keeps them busy and beside they are not in the traps that long.   On the page I have a few pics of swarms that didn't quite fit in 5 frame boxes so they started building on the bottom of the traps
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Bee-Mover
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« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2013, 08:15:56 AM »

Take a look at my facebook page for "Ludington honey"    It has a ton of pics of swarm trapping and catching.   I catch really big swarms in five frame boxes as the pic will show.   Maybe I would catch more if I use larger boxes.  Who knows but my % of traps to swarms has always been very high. My reason for using 3 frames in a 5 frame box started because I didn't have enough drawn frames to fill traps.   I now use 3 because I believe I catch bigger swarms because of the extra room.   They do always start building comb in the empty spaces but I believe this just keeps them busy and beside they are not in the traps that long.   On the page I have a few pics of swarms that didn't quite fit in 5 frame boxes so they started building on the bottom of the traps

Great page! 
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danno
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« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2013, 01:24:32 PM »

Take a look at my facebook page for "Ludington honey"    It has a ton of pics of swarm trapping and catching.   I catch really big swarms in five frame boxes as the pic will show.   Maybe I would catch more if I use larger boxes.  Who knows but my % of traps to swarms has always been very high. My reason for using 3 frames in a 5 frame box started because I didn't have enough drawn frames to fill traps.   I now use 3 because I believe I catch bigger swarms because of the extra room.   They do always start building comb in the empty spaces but I believe this just keeps them busy and beside they are not in the traps that long.   On the page I have a few pics of swarms that didn't quite fit in 5 frame boxes so they started building on the bottom of the traps

Great page! 
Thank you!   It has brought a lot of sales and swarms my way
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Brother Dave
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« Reply #14 on: December 24, 2013, 09:44:59 PM »

Enjoyed your pictures


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