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A few years ago i put up a bunch of swarm traps to try and catch some free bees...and then mr black bear knocked them all down, that was the following year, I rebuilt them and rehung them and they are still up..
the first year I caught several small swarms and transferred them to a hive box so they could grow in numbers and survive the winter...regardless to say none of the swarms survived...so I basically gave up on the bees till I have more time and finish up other projects....
but last month I noticed one of my swarm traps had some bee activity going on, and yes a swarm moved in, Im going to leave them alone till next spring, the swarm trap is a decent size that can hold alot of bees, I would say inside volume is about 80% of a deep...I am curious if they do better not being disturbed through the winter...
Ill know in spring..till then ill just keep an eye on them..
 

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Same thing here. A late swarm moved in here and I thought of just leaving them to their own habits until Spring so I eft them and just kept visiting them every couple of days to see how they were doing. Eventually, they just moved on and I am guessing that they went back to the hive they came out of.My homemade swarm trap holds 5 deep frames. That is propolis and beeswax smeared on the outside of the trap.

Plant Tree Wood Natural landscape Trunk
 

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Is there a standard design for swarm traps in the US? What do people like best or have most success with? In Australia it's illegal to leave boxes outside with foundation in them without bees- biosecurity etc. Last season I put a few single deeps around (that had had bees in them before), in good locations ( for a bee) with a light spray of 'swarm lure' lemongrass based oil, and although bees found it. no one moved in. It's coming into Spring here and of course I'm thinking swarm traps and i had heard of this guy and like his idea, so will try i this year:
This catches the scouting swarm, not the swarm from their new home. Good to hand near ones own hives if you think they'll swarm . here it is, tell me what you think:
Get a sturdy good sized bucket with lid. Coming out the bottom of the lid, extending vertically away is a length of wood about 6-9 ". On top of the lid, put another flat bit of wood to clamp the lid between them and hold together with big hook or eyelet hook, you need to be able to hang it. Gently melt some old black bees wax up, with some propolis in and a bit of the lemongrass oil, and soak a bit of hessian in it, then wrap around and fasten to the length of wood. The wood- lid apparatus is hoisted up high into a tree on a rope, the free end tied conveniently lower for you. When our hopeful swarm decides to hang out here whilst scouting for a new home. you place the bucket underneath and lower the swarm lid into it. Ta da.

any thoughts on this or other?
 

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I think that would be a great idea. Sounds like it should work. I looked up plans for mine but if you do a search for homemade swarm traps, you will be amazed what great minds come up with and would be legal in your neck of the woods. Most are rather simple and I like that. Mine,that you see above in the post is rather heavy with 5 frames of bees moved in. I now refrain from locating them higher then I can reach from the ground or from the back of my ATV. Good to have a pulley anchored above also for lowering if no help is around.
 

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I think that would be a great idea. Sounds like it should work. I looked up plans for mine but if you do a search for homemade swarm traps, you will be amazed what great minds come up with and would be legal in your neck of the woods. Most are rather simple and I like that. Mine,that you see above in the post is rather heavy with 5 frames of bees moved in. I now refrain from locating them higher then I can reach from the ground or from the back of my ATV. Good to have a pulley anchored above also for lowering if no help is around.
yes, if you get bear activity I imagine the extra height and pulley system could be handy. I will have another look around for swarm traps. Spring here, i can feel the quickening as if the sap is in my veins and its hard not to be excited. Although if you guys are dry up there, you'll know we're wet down here, hasn't stopped raining for a year and longer now, Eucalyptus forest all putting energy in vegetative growth and not a flower bud in sight. Most eucs will carry their buds for 6- 12 months before flowering. Lucky my planted flowering trees and bushes are established and starting to put on a good show- closest bees are the first to get there for pick of the bounty. Even so a token picnic- will be another very lean year. ( although even though i didn't get honey last year, I did plunder the crap out of one hive for a nuc split and everyone but me in my bee club sugar supplemented last season so token plantings must have some merit. Every plant i plant is for bees. yeah i get a just little obsessive.
 

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yes, if you get bear activity I imagine the extra height and pulley system could be handy. I will have another look around for swarm traps. Spring here, i can feel the quickening as if the sap is in my veins and its hard not to be excited. Although if you guys are dry up there, you'll know we're wet down here, hasn't stopped raining for a year and longer now, Eucalyptus forest all putting energy in vegetative growth and not a flower bud in sight. Most eucs will carry their buds for 6- 12 months before flowering. Lucky my planted flowering trees and bushes are established and starting to put on a good show- closest bees are the first to get there for pick of the bounty. Even so a token picnic- will be another very lean year. ( although even though i didn't get honey last year, I did plunder the crap out of one hive for a nuc split and everyone but me in my bee club sugar supplemented last season so token plantings must have some merit. Every plant i plant is for bees. yeah i get a just little obsessive.
I feel sorry for you. I sure know what wet is because of continued raining. I served two tours in Vietnam and experienced two monsoon seasons. I never thought it would end. We were constantly wet either from rain or from sweat and no relief in sight because we had to live out in it in the jungles. No luxury to having shelter except for a poncho.
Because of beekeeping and believe me, I am very new at it, I am finding value in planting everything I can for the bees. I even have an app on my phone to identify what weed I am looking at. Before bees, a weed was a weed. I am even visiting my local nursery more then I ever did. Now we are on a first name basis.;)
 

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I would want to get them out of a trap right away.

To catch another colony and because they will build wonky comb (unless your traps have drawn comb) the longer you leave them in there the more it becomes a "cut out" as they will build any needed comb in any open space attaching to the box and lid or cross combing.
 
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I'm wondering the same. I might put them in a deep or NUC so that I could get them winterized properly so as to give them the best chance of survival through winter. In that swarm trap in my picture, there is quite a bit of room in the bottom below the deep frames. I captured a swam in the beginning of the swarm season but left them in there to long by the time I noticed that they were permanent residents. They built comb clear to the bottom of the box and it was all I could do to transport the frames over to a deep box. All 5 frames in the swarm trap were packed with bees and no more room for parking.
 
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