No announcement yet.

Do trapouts work on established colonies?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Do trapouts work on established colonies?

    A lady wrote in to my neighborhood beekeepers email list asking if she could get some bees removed from her tree and rehomed so that she could get it trimmed (apparently arborists won’t deal with trees that have bees in them). I went to peak at it and the bees got very aggressive immediately. They have a few entry points all within an old knot hole, the largest is the size of a tennis ball, there does not seem to be a way to cut into the tree without cuttng half of it apart , I was wondering if a trapout would work? It has been there for at least a year and a half, and I have no access to get to any of the brood comb , let alone trying to find the queen, will she eventually leave the brood nest or not even notice the foragers are gone. Thanks!

  • #2
    Start your trapout as soon as there are enough drones.
    Close all entrances to the tree bar one.
    On the open entrance make sure they can only fly out, not back in.
    Near the entrance place a box with a frame of larvae (no bees). The returning bees should gather in the box to take care of the larvea.
    After 3-4 days add another frame of larvae and a frame of emerging bees - NO BEES on the frames.

    Eventually the bees in the tree should swarm out and the bees in your box should make their own queen from what you give them.

    It may take a while before they abscond though...

    Good luck
    Waregem - West-Vlaanderen - België (Flemish/Dutch)
    Waregem - West-Flanders - Belgium (English)
    My Blog


    • #3
      Thanks for the info, yeah from what I’ve been hearing, it seems like you’re not very likely to preserve the genetics of the colony your trying to trapout, unless you get lucky and can catch the queen in a swarm trap or something separate from the trapout box, right? It would be nice to know that you could rehome the colony and keep their genetic line in tact.


      • BobTheBuilder
        BobTheBuilder commented
        Editing a comment
        To get the genetics from the colony inside 'whatever' you need to capture the queen. You can only do that by doing a cut-out rather than a trap-out. OR and that's only if you're lucky, catch her swarming out.