As mentioned in my book review of Swarm Traps and Bait Hives, I tweaked the approach I was planning for my “bait hives“. The goal remains the same: to catch passing swarms, to build up my number of active hives (for free!).
Based on the insights in the book, this is what I did:
- Used two hive boxes for the bait hive (this was also recommended by Tim Malfroy for my Warré hives).
- Top and bottom boards were screwed on.
- I drilled an entrance hole at the bottom of the bait hive, at a size recommended by the book. (I hammered in a nail across the entrance to stop birds from using the box as a nest.)
- The hive is hung 2m off the ground, attached to a nail in a tree.
- The hive is placed in the shade, facing north.
- (When the book said the ideal location is a shady forest, I said, “hey, I actually have that, next door behind the old convent”, and the location was set.)
- I included a few used frames in the bait hive, generously donated by Gavin Smith, my local bee guru.
- I used lemongrass oil, putting 8 drops on some paper towel, and partially sealing it in a ziplock bag.
So that’s it! Hopefully my trusty bait hive will catch me some bees 🙂