A bee hive in the trees

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My first 'bait hive', hung in a tree behind the old convent next door.
My first ‘bait hive’, hung in a tree behind the old convent next door.

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 🙂

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6 thoughts on “A bee hive in the trees

    Emily Heath said:
    August 23, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    Hope you catch some bees! Interesting, other books I’ve read have said they prefer south facing entrances.

    James responded:
    August 23, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    Emily, are the books you read written by authors based in the northern hemisphere? If so, it would be south for them, and north for us (in Sydney)…

      Emily Heath said:
      August 24, 2013 at 5:35 am

      Ah of course – sorry I had forgotten about that!

    Two boxes added to our beehive | Lewisham House said:
    September 1, 2013 at 4:57 pm

    […] set my spare hive boxes up as bait hive on the roof, adding to the bait hive in the convent next door. (Following the “it can’t hurt to try!” […]

    Two bait hives ready for spring | Lewisham House said:
    September 1, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    […] Update: see my review of Swarm traps and bait hives, and how it changed our bait hive approach. […]

    Our third bait hive is now in place | Lewisham House said:
    September 9, 2013 at 10:39 am

    […] Following the advice in the book Swarm traps and bait hives, we’ve established a few bait hives, including one in the convent next door. […]

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