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Author Topic: Swarm trap vs. deck boards  (Read 511 times)

Offline FloridaGardener

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Swarm trap vs. deck boards
« on: March 19, 2020, 12:49:43 am »
Swarm call.  Cloud had been circling at least an hour when I arrived.
Hung my jacket on the third flood balcony.

Set down swarm trap where it would be high up close to the cloud.
Um. whoops.  They clustered...and then, um, went into the deck boards.  Oh man.
Now it's possible they were on their way out of the joist cavity, and weren't successful coaxing the queen out.

But I'm hoping that soon, the under-deck cavity doesn't look as comfy as the swarm trap.
 :oops:  Next time, the trap goes further from the building. You never can tell with bees.
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Offline sawdstmakr

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Re: Swarm trap vs. deck boards
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2020, 07:48:19 am »
Sounds like they were moving in. If so today you can smoke them out. Bee sure your smoker is properly lit and does not throw any ash or flames and put a lot of smoke on the entrance. And I do mean a lot. You can also spray Beequick in the top of the smoker, ON NON BURNING PINE NEEDLES, and that will help. Make sure you wipe the entrance of your swarm trap with a little bit of lemongrass oil. If you have a bee vacuum, use that to suck them up as they come out. Watch for the queen coming out, if you can cage her and put the cage in the swarm trap, the bees will all move in. If the swarm is too big for the swarm trap, use a full size hive. Good luck.
Jim Altmiller

Offline FloridaGardener

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Re: Swarm trap vs. deck boards
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2020, 10:45:54 am »
Couple of facts that make me think they may already be established there:
    1. Receptionist said they had a cloud of bees there before, about a year ago.
    2. Dead bees were inside the balcony door.  If it was a newly-arrived swarm, any trapped bees would still have been flying.
    3. There were a dozen mason bees with the swarm; maybe they just picked up on the buzz, but I theorize they mason bees were nesting in some building cavity.
    4.  Over an hour is a long time for the bees to stay in a swirl.  Typically they exit in a cloud, settle in 5-10 minutes, then start sending out scouts and then head in to the chosen location.

I'm open to feedback on this analysis.

I'd go back today but the problem is:
     1. No visible entrance.  They entered the ends of deck boards in a ten-foot span and disappeared. I'm not sure smoke or benzaldehyde will hit anything other than the deck boards. 
     2. If they want to use the swarm trap, it's 70 liters, water-tight,  with a 3" bait comb in it,  a dab of lemongrass with a 1" entrance. One the next balcony down I left a complete, used medium hive as an alternate choice.
     3. It's over an hour round trip and there's no pay in it. Pretty neighborhood, tho. This is a commercial building, but the houses nearby look like this: https://rosemarybeach.com/


Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Swarm trap vs. deck boards
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2020, 01:17:52 pm »
Couple of facts that make me think they may already be established there:
    1. Receptionist said they had a cloud of bees there before, about a year ago.
    2. Dead bees were inside the balcony door.  If it was a newly-arrived swarm, any trapped bees would still have been flying.
    3. There were a dozen mason bees with the swarm; maybe they just picked up on the buzz, but I theorize they mason bees were nesting in some building cavity.
    4.  Over an hour is a long time for the bees to stay in a swirl.  Typically they exit in a cloud, settle in 5-10 minutes, then start sending out scouts and then head in to the chosen location.

I'm open to feedback on this analysis.

I'd go back today but the problem is:
     1. No visible entrance.  They entered the ends of deck boards in a ten-foot span and disappeared. I'm not sure smoke or benzaldehyde will hit anything other than the deck boards. 
     2. If they want to use the swarm trap, it's 70 liters, water-tight,  with a 3" bait comb in it,  a dab of lemongrass with a 1" entrance. One the next balcony down I left a complete, used medium hive as an alternate choice.
     3. It's over an hour round trip and there's no pay in it. Pretty neighborhood, tho. This is a commercial building, but the houses nearby look like this: https://rosemarybeach.com/

Do you have a thermal infrared camera? If so your odds of pinpointing them will be drastically improved.
You may be right even without the analysis. It seems sometimes the folks may say, "they have only been here a few days", or in your case, "they just arrived".  But in counter response in your case; since you visualized them flying and watched them go in under the deck boards, Jims advice should be spot on. You were lucky. Many times the bees have been there for a while and you can not make them leave even with smoke. At least that is what I have found. Either way, good hunting!

Phillip Hall
For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

Offline FloridaGardener

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Re: Swarm trap vs. deck boards
« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2020, 11:02:12 pm »
Well whaddaya know.  Went back to check the swarm trap to see if there was anything...and there were little fuzzy bees finishing up orientation flight outside the edge of the deck. 
So they WERE trying to coax out the queen who perhaps couldn?t fit out from under the deck membrane - or was injured.  Or something. 

I bid on the cutout but the manager said she is far too worried about ?the current economic collapse? to worry about structural damage from bees.

Proving the point that the more you have ($2M buildings) the more you have to lose.  The rest of us in the 99% don?t have stock holdings to worry about.  Mo? money mo? problems.