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Author Topic: Swarm lure  (Read 3738 times)
papabear
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« on: March 01, 2007, 12:56:07 PM »

I read that I can use lemongrass oil to catch swarms. Has anyone used this method or is there another way to lure swarms? If I buy a swarm trap they want $49.99 just to ship it . What is the method of useing the lemongrass oil?
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kathyp
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« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2007, 01:36:12 PM »

i have been told to just use a super with some comb in it.  that's what i plan to do this year.  my hope is that if any of my hives swarm, i'll catch my own back.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

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« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2007, 01:39:00 PM »

>Has anyone used this method

Yes.  Many times.

> or is there another way to lure swarms?

You can put all your "retired" queens in a jar of alcohol.  The alcohol from the jar works pretty well.  You can spend a lot more money than the lemongrass oil to buy lemongrass oil in little plastic vials from the bee supply places. They work fine too.

> If I buy a swarm trap they want $49.99 just to ship it . What is the method of useing the lemongrass oil?

How much to buy it?  I would just use an old box.  Any old box will do, but one that had bees in it will work better.  An old ten frame deep is the PERFECT size and a five frame deep works ok.  Old comb is a good lure as well.

Here's some reading for you:
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesferal.htm
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2007, 06:44:22 PM »

I buy lemongrass oil for a few dollars from a local health food store. I have had success with it.

Sincerely,
Brendhan
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kathyp
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« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2007, 06:53:18 PM »

i bought  mine off ebay.  got a better deal than i could find in town even with shipping.  if anyone is interested, i can post the name of the company.  i use them quite a bit making bath salts, etc.  they will combine orders and it saves lots on shipping.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2007, 08:42:02 PM »

Where can I get some comb?
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2007, 09:21:55 PM »

Out of a hive.  Smiley
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2007, 01:35:44 AM »

is it practical to set up a bait hive as a trap for one's own potential swarms?
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« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2007, 07:10:39 AM »

is it practical to set up a bait hive as a trap for one's own potential swarms?

I guess it would depend on how many hives you have and how well you manage them.  If managed correctly,  there should be very minimal swarm potential.   Doing splits is a better way than trying to capture swarms from them.   If you do set out traps,  take Michael's advice on distance and height.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2007, 08:54:28 AM »

>is it practical to set up a bait hive as a trap for one's own potential swarms?

Yes.  But further is better than closer.

Of course the idea is to keep them from swarming.

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesswarmcontrol.htm
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2007, 09:01:26 AM »

Michael-

    Why would you choose to lure a swarm into a deep hive body, when you actually use medium boxes?  Just curious, cause it seems complicated to switch them.  At least for a new beek like me.

Thanks
Smiley
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Zoot
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« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2007, 10:41:39 AM »

Good question...I only use mediums myself.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2007, 10:59:24 AM »

> Why would you choose to lure a swarm into a deep hive body, when you actually use medium boxes?

Because a wider hive is harder to tie into the crotch of a tree and because I still have some deeps laying around.  A five frame deep nuc with medium frames in it works well for me.

>  Just curious, cause it seems complicated to switch them.

Nothing to switch.  I have medium frames in them.
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Michael Bush
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papabear
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« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2007, 06:10:07 PM »

if i put a box with drawn comb arn't the wax moths going to tear it up?
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« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2007, 06:25:25 PM »

if i put a box with drawn comb arn't the wax moths going to tear it up?
Possibly.

If it is really old and hard they may not.  If it has never had brood reared in it they may not. But the best bet is to treat is with Certan.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #15 on: March 05, 2007, 10:04:12 PM »

>if i put a box with drawn comb arn't the wax moths going to tear it up?

http://www.beeworks.com/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=18
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Michael Bush
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ktbearpaws
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« Reply #16 on: March 06, 2007, 03:57:45 PM »

>" Old comb is a good lure as well."

Will foundation board work along with the lemongrass?
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BEEMAN
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« Reply #17 on: March 06, 2007, 04:44:38 PM »

BEEMAN'S TWO CENTS

I HAVE READ MANY POSTS ON USING LEMON GRASS OIL AS A LURE FOR
SWARM TRAPS, SO I PURCAHSED SOME ON EBAY. I DECIDED TO TEST IT BY
PUTTING A FEW DROPS ON A PAPER TOWEL AND SETTING IT OUT ON MY
PORCH. WITHIN TWO TO THREE MINUTES I HAD A HUNDRED OR MORE HONEY BEES FLYING AROUND THE PAPER TOWEL. THEY STAYED UNTIL AFTER DARK BEFORE THEY LEFT. SO I GUESS IT WILL WORK IN MY SWARM TRAPS THIS
SPRING.
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Mici
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« Reply #18 on: March 06, 2007, 04:47:12 PM »

wow have to try this out!
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kathyp
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« Reply #19 on: March 06, 2007, 04:51:43 PM »

just be careful where you put it.  i got some on the outside of my hive.  bees clumped on it and the next morning, i had a dead clump of bees.  they stayed there through a rain storm.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #20 on: March 06, 2007, 04:55:14 PM »

So, nobody knows if foundation with work in place of old comb?
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« Reply #21 on: March 06, 2007, 07:24:00 PM »

Foundation will work but comb is preferred.

Sincerely,
Brendhan
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« Reply #22 on: March 06, 2007, 08:46:29 PM »

So, nobody knows if foundation with work in place of old comb?

It is definately no worse than nothing.   It is definately not as good as comb.  Perhaps somewhere in between.  Since bees prefer to make natural comb over drawing foundation,  I would think it on the lower end of the range at best.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #23 on: March 06, 2007, 09:45:55 PM »

>So, nobody knows if foundation with work in place of old comb?

Work?  Yes.  As well as old comb?  No.
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Michael Bush
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ndvan
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« Reply #24 on: March 06, 2007, 10:03:44 PM »

This is something that I actually posted on another site first, but it fits here, so I'll post it again. I'm too lazy to write this again, so I cut and pasted.  One other person on the other site seemed to think this was interesting, and maybe somebody will here too.  I hope that cutting and pasting from another site does not violate some rule of internet etiquette, but here goes:

As a disclaimer, I am a total newbee, am not a chemist, do not yet own a single bee, and I do not know what I am talking about. (I do have various hive parts put together and have ordered some bees.)

That being said, here is an interesting thing that I came across, from two totally different sources.

I have a 1976 edition of The Hive and the Honey Bee, and in a topic relating to "Fanning" behavior, it states that in "orientation" or "scent" fanning bees release chemicals from the Nassanoff gland to attract other bees. It states that the chemicals released by the gland include "gerianol, citral, nerolic and geranic acids," and possibly other unidentified compounds.

Here's the interesting part. I have a book titled On Food and Cooking (2004 edition) by Harold McGee. This is not a cookbook, but is a food science book for laypeople. (Really great book if you are interested in that sort of thing and the 2004 edition is a major update.) The On Food and Cooking has a chapter on the chemistry of herbs and spices that includes a summary of the importanct chemical compounds contained in various herbs and spices. According to Mr. McGee, the compounds in lemongrass that provide its flavor profile include: citral, gerianol and linalool. Citral and gerianol are two of the chemicals made by the Nassanoff gland. Frome the name, I suspect that gerianic acid, which is also secreted by the gland, is similar chemically to gerianol.

Lemon Verbena contains citral and linalool, but not gerianol.

However, bees may like Linalool too, since it is contained in several other herbs that bees like, including basil, lavender, tarragon, marjoram and thyme. A member of my bee club actually puts a few drops of marjoram oil in her sugar syrup, and she says the bees really like it.

According to McGee, some of the chemicals that make herbs and spices flavorful are really just ways that plants deter animals from eating them (maybe including thymol, which is the main but not not the only chemical in thyme). However, I think that some of these chemicals apparently exist to attract honeybees. The plants appear to have evolved (or, if you prefer, were designed/created -- please don't start that debate) to produce chemicals that bees produce to attract each other.

Moreover, this may mean that lemongrass oil contains at least two of the primary chemicals that bees actually make to attract other bees. Maybe buying bee pheremone is not much (or any) better than just getting some lemongrass oil.

Just my two cents.
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Jerrymac
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« Reply #25 on: March 06, 2007, 10:12:14 PM »

Want to have some fun? Put some banana extract on a person.
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« Reply #26 on: March 06, 2007, 10:28:18 PM »

On Food and Cooking (2004 edition) by Harold McGee

What a great book.  However I was disapointed on the section about honey
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ndvan
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« Reply #27 on: March 07, 2007, 06:52:44 PM »

Yeah the book is great, but the honey section is pretty lame.
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