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First attempt at a bait hive

 
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semiautonomous
Nurse Bee


Joined: 30 Dec 2013
Posts: 44
Location: England, Shropshire, Shrewsbury

PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2014 3:24 pm    Post subject: First attempt at a bait hive Reply with quote

I've just finished my htbh and now looking at making some bait hives. I have a bunch of old pallet wood but was worried about how heavy it was going to be. Then I remembered about some big sheets of cardboard I had saved from a furniture delivery. So I knocked this up over the last few days.

The hole 'trough' part is made purely of cardboard glued together, and then a wooden frame around the top to support the top bars and give the hole thing some rigidity.





Not sure if its going to work, but I thought it was worth a try. Now just thinking about making it a bit more waterproof, maybe a coat of linseed oil? I will probably make one out of wood as well but this was so much easier.


Last edited by semiautonomous on Fri Mar 07, 2014 6:19 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Garret
Golden Bee


Joined: 04 Apr 2009
Posts: 1681
Location: Canada, BC, Delta

PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2014 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice! They should work just fine. The only negative I see is that they won't weather very well without some kind of protection which it sounds like you are looking into.
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J Smith
Foraging Bee


Joined: 13 Jan 2014
Posts: 169
Location: New Zealand, South Island, Southland, Riversdale.

PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2014 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree, neat idea- but I worry the card my soak up moisture like a sponge, even ambient moisture- not just rain.
I would be tempted to coat the card in "poor man's varnish" made from waterproof (exterior grade) PVA wood glue mixed with water to a runny paint-able consistency.
This would not add much weight, would add some degree of waterproofing and rigidity.

Over here we have Real Estate signs made from plastic Cora-Flute material, the plastic version of corrugated cardboard, it is also used for things like conservatory roofs. If you can find some of that in the form of damaged and no longer needed signs or off cuts from a conservatory installer it can be used in a similar way to make bait hives.
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rmcpb
Scout Bee


Joined: 17 Jul 2011
Posts: 447
Location: Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia

PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2014 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That plastic corrugated board makes great lids for hives as well.
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Bugscouter
Silver Bee


Joined: 19 Mar 2012
Posts: 808
Location: USA/California/ Sacramento

PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2014 11:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was wondering about the girls chewing on the cardboard. You would need to check it often.

I hefted an 18 inch top bar nuc 10 feet up a wall for a trap out last year. I like the idea of lighter.
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J Smith
Foraging Bee


Joined: 13 Jan 2014
Posts: 169
Location: New Zealand, South Island, Southland, Riversdale.

PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How about wrapping the exterior in layers of 2" fabric duct tape?
If started from the bottom, each subsequent layer slightly overlapping the lower layer, it should keep the card somewhat waterproofed, add little in the way of weight and be easily applied.
Interior chewing might still be a problem, but they might stop chewing when they hit the tape, thus leaving a complete (if somewhat weakened) enclosure.
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semiautonomous
Nurse Bee


Joined: 30 Dec 2013
Posts: 44
Location: England, Shropshire, Shrewsbury

PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 2:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for all the replies Smile

I hadn't thought about the bees chewing up the cardboard, thanks for the heads up. I'm not too mobile so at least at first I'm just going to be putting these in friends gardens, so I'm hoping I will get to hear about them before the bees have a chance to do too much damage. How quickly do you think they mite get through? I like the duct tape idea, would be a simple solution. Another idea I had was lining the inside with a layer of plastic, do you think that would discourage them?

J Smith, I'd love to get my hands on some of that corrugated plastic sheeting, its used in for sale signs here too. I had looked at buying some but it looked pretty expensive. I will have to keep an eye out for any going spare.
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WileyHunter
Moderator Bee


Joined: 13 Jan 2014
Posts: 125
Location: Batesville, IN USA

PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Check with political offices... Candidates usually buy way more than they need for their race, and need to do something with them afterwards. I have a pretty decent stash from when my b-i-l ran for schoolboard, we use them as targets Laughing Rolling Eyes
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trekmate
Golden Bee


Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 1125
Location: UK, North Yorkshire, Bentham

PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

semiautonomous wrote:
J Smith, I'd love to get my hands on some of that corrugated plastic sheeting, its used in for sale signs here too. I had looked at buying some but it looked pretty expensive. I will have to keep an eye out for any going spare.

Ask you local estate agent who puts up their signs. Some are damaged by wind near to the post and unusable, but still have a good usable area.
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H1veHead
Nurse Bee


Joined: 19 May 2013
Posts: 28
Location: Child Okeford, Dorset, UK.

PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi everyone.

First can I say that your bait hive looks really well-made and good photos too semiautonomous.

Seeing it has brought back to my mind a question that maybe someone can help me with?

I built my first bait hive last year. I built it in exactly the same way as a full hTBH using Phil's instructions, but I made it smaller - about 35-40 litres - and without legs of course.

I positioned it on the roof of a two-storey building and discovered just how awkward it was to get up the ladder!

I had thought about building it from lighter/thinner wood, but I reasoned that although I know that it was just a bait hive, the bees wouldn't know that.

So here's my question - wouldn't a swarm (or the scout bees anyway) be looking for a new permanent home and therefore (being the clever little mathematicians and engineers that they are) wouldn't they reject a bait hive made from thin/light material due to it's being less substantial and lacking in sufficient qualities for, for example, over-wintering?

Sorry for the long-winded question but I hope you see what I'm thinking.

Thanks in advance for any help!

H1veHead
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CeeBee
Foraging Bee


Joined: 16 Jun 2013
Posts: 104
Location: UK, Cambridge, Milton

PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 11:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

H1veHead wrote:

...So here's my question - wouldn't a swarm (or the scout bees anyway) be looking for a new permanent home and therefore (being the clever little mathematicians and engineers that they are) wouldn't they reject a bait hive made from thin/light material due to it's being less substantial and lacking in sufficient qualities for, for example, over-wintering?


In general, I hate replies which are just someone's opinion, with no evidence. But I'm not a scout bee, so I've no idea. My opinion is that this will be way beyond what they might consider - it would take a lot of evolution for failures (a long time after occupation) to be associated with flimsy materials and lack of insulation - they might have thrived (and swarmed) before it even happens.

We'll see about the square plastic flower-pot which is now in my apple tree. As of this morning, it smelled like hot plastic (even though it's many years old), with a hint of lemongrass (essential oil I applied). Hopefully the apple tree will soon grow some leaves, and at least the 'hot' problem will go away... I've got another 3 the same to put in suitable-seeming places.
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biobee
Site Admin


Joined: 14 Jun 2007
Posts: 1055
Location: UK, England, S. Devon

PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 12:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a swarm move into a polystyrene packing case a couple of summers ago. They then proceeded to chew through the sides, making several new entrances and eventually causing the box itself to collapse. It is now supported by a plastic crate that happens to fit over the box.

So no, they don't seem to be quite as technically advanced as one might think, and I'm pretty sure the thickness of material will not play a big part in their calculations, especuially when you consider that they have been known to move into old tyres, discarded fuel tanks and other motley cavities.
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H1veHead
Nurse Bee


Joined: 19 May 2013
Posts: 28
Location: Child Okeford, Dorset, UK.

PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, the evidence speaks for itself of course! Thanks for the clarification chaps. Off I now go to build some nice, lightweight, bait hives ready for the swarming season!

HiveHead.
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catchercradle
Golden Bee


Joined: 31 May 2010
Posts: 1495
Location: Cambridge, UK

PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Whether the chewing of the cardboard is a problem or not depends on how regularly you check your bait hives. If you can be sure to move them to a full sized hive the same day no problem. If you may have to keep them there for a week or more while you build them a new home............ not so good.
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BridgetB
Scout Bee


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 355
Location: UK Cornwall, Falmouth

PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 10:36 am    Post subject: Flower pot swarm trap/bait hives Reply with quote

I am looking to build some bait hive from square flower pots. The top bars fit over nicely, but what do people do to stop them slipping off and what about the lid? What experience have people had with them?
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1582
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Bridget

If these are the plastic square planters, make sure you put good drainage holes covered in mesh in the lowest part of them. The plastic doesn't breath and a lot of condensation collects in the bottom and puddles. Debris from the swarm above... pollen wax flakes dead bees etc fall into the puddles and start to rot.... flies get attracted to the stinking mess and lay eggs and soon it's an extremely unpleasant situation. Having said that I know of one colony that moved into such a hive as a swarm and has overwintered in it, even with a stinking mess in the bottom. Drainage holes were drilled but were too small for the moisture to run out before decomposing matter clogged them.

I think the cardboard is a reasonable idea, especially if you can get triple layer cardboard and paint it with molten bees wax inside and out. I made a temporary sign for my yard gate like this and it survived for months completely exposed to the elements.

Good luck with baiting a swarm.

Barbara
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mefgbee
Guard Bee


Joined: 10 Jul 2014
Posts: 57
Location: UK, Cheltenham

PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 11:45 am    Post subject: Re: Flower pot swarm trap/bait hives Reply with quote

BridgetB wrote:
I am looking to build some bait hive from square flower pots. The top bars fit over nicely, but what do people do to stop them slipping off and what about the lid? What experience have people had with them?


Hi Bridget,

Last year I collected a swarm in a square flower pot. I placed standard top bars on the top, and secured them with tape to stop them sliding around in the car. For a roof I used a 600x600mm slate I had lying around. This was weighted down but the rain did seem to wick under. So a couple of days later I placed a spare roof on top of the slate and that shed water better. See the pictures below.

Like Barbara says, there will be condensation. When I eventually got around to moving the bees into a wooden bait hive after a week or so (I had wanted to leave them as long as possible before disturbing) I was amazed how much water was in the bottom, and some bees had drowned. So definitely drill holes in the bottom.

My feelings were that the plastic pot is really only good as a temporary (a few days maybe) measure. Great for swarm catching as it's light, but cold and damp probably for the bees as the sides are so thin.

Mike





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