Swarm Traps that catch bee swarms under them


A fellow beek from Poland read my swarm trapping book and built a trap. It caught bees, but under it.

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4 Responses to “Swarm Traps that catch bee swarms under them”

  1. Richard noel says:

    Hi Mcartney, I had a similar experience last year.
    A beautiful swarm landed on my five framed dadant nuc but just wouldn’t go in. They stayed there for a whole day. Next morning I tried to brush them off in to the nuc, when they took to the air. I managed to catch them when they landed in a shrub about 5 minutes later. Amazing experience. I think queens rely on scout bees to check out possible new sites for colonisation! In my case I don’t think the queen liked what she found when she arrived on site. My fellow beekeepers report similar rare events with their swarm traps.
    I will try and include a picture if I can’t I wil send it to another address of yours.
    Hope it’s of some help in our understanding.

  2. mjname says:

    Has anyone tried just leaving a two inch wide board out of the bottom? Seems like it would be less scary and claustrophobic than a traditional swarm trap. Also if the top of the trap was arranged like a top bar hive with some comb already in place…when retrieving the swarm trap you could just slide in the missing board and cart them down to their new location.

  3. grant king says:

    I had that happen on a trap that I had just set. I set it on a Sunday night and the next morning there were scout bees going in. Wednesday night the swarm was there. On Friday night i saw they were drawing out comb on the bottom. The next morning i got out the beevac and dumped them inside where they stayed. The trap was a 6 bar top bar trap with a 1″ hole. The swarm was a little smaller than a soccer ball cut in half. The only thing i could figure is maybe the lemongrass oil was too fresh for the queen to want to go in. I took the qtips out and dumped the bees in and they immediately started wotking because the next week there was capped brood inside. I still have the hive and they are doing well.

  4. Daniel says:


    I started TBH bee keeping three years ago (I watched nearly all of your videos before starting) I built my own swarm trap, following your design (1/2 inch hole, six bars) and in my first year I caught three swarms, the first one hung on the bottom, just like your picture. They would not go in and even left them over night to see if they would. In the end I had to take the trap down and shake them into a hive. I put the trap back up and the second two swarms took to the trap no problem. The first swarm was large, second swarm medium and third swarm small. (Third swarm was late in the year here, early October and didn’t make it to the spring) after the first swarm that didn’t take, I did hang a piece of old comb from one of the bars.

    This month I caught a new swarm, using the exact same box with comb from another hive and they took to it no problem.

    Perhaps new traps don’t have that “lived-in smell” ?

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