History teaches us that beekeeping has been around for thousands of years. Early humans learned the art of culturing bees through trial and error, observation, and in-depth study. They learned that their old ways of gathering honey destroyed the hives leaving no chance of continuity. As years passed, beekeeping methodologies improved with the focus of keeping the hive intact after extracting the honey. This led to a series of innovations in equipment and processes. Today, more and more beekeepers help in the continuance of productive beekeeping through the use of conventional, traditional, and modern knowledge and equipment.
Beekeeping is a fun way to have a productive hobby. You can also turn it into a large-scale business wherein you’ll also enjoy the perks of earning money from honey and beeswax. There are lots of information on how to guide you to become a successful beekeeper, and alongside the guides are effective equipment that you can use to maintain and manage bees. Whether as a beginner or as a long-time beekeeper, the success in this field depends on how well you utilize the knowledge and tools available for you.
Since the tools needed in beekeeping are readily available, the only thing that needs to be done is to get the bees. It may sound tricky at first, but there are two ways that you can do to get the bees. First, you can simply purchase the bees from a bee shop or a similar establishment. You can also buy them from private owners. The second way, which is more exciting and fulfilling, is to catch the bees by yourself. If you’re new to this, we’re not asking you to carelessly catch them in nature. You might end up hurting yourself as well as the bees. There’s a convenient and effective way to catch the bees and that’s through the use of bee swarm traps.
How Do Bee Traps Work?
Trapping bees is a common activity in beekeeping. Improving the genetic pool of your apiary or filling that new beehive with a honeybee colony requires you to bring in new bees. Bee traps are designed to catch swarming bees. There are many types of traps built by various manufacturers and beekeeping equipment suppliers. The basic principles that bee traps use to catch swarming bees are:
- Swarming bees are looking for a new home. Bee traps promise safety and space for the swarm. If the scout bees find the trap is suitable as a new home, they bring in the swarm to the trap.
- The use of bait and lures in bee traps attracts scout bees. Bait is usually in form of a little honey split in the trap or honeycomb placed somewhere in the trap. Lures are often scent-based and aim to mimic beehive odors as well as queen bee pheromone. Lemongrass essential oil is also effective as a lure.
How to Setup a Bee Trap
Setting up a bee trap is an easy procedure for both beginner and experienced beekeepers. Bee traps may come assembled or in parts that you have to put together yourself. If your bee trap comes in parts, you only need a few tools to bring it nicely together. It should be accompanied by a manual or instructions to guide you on how to put it together. Tools that you need for the job include screws, nails, screw drivers and a hammer.
- After your bee trap is assembled, or if it comes readily built, you need to bait it and add a lure. Bait is easy to get for beekeepers that already have a beehive or two. Old honeycomb is enough as bait. It may contain some honey or not.
- Lures for bee traps are based on scents. They are easy to purchase and work very well. Lemongrass lures are great for bee traps. They mimic queen pheromones. Other lures may include trace elements that are attractive to scout bees.
- Place the bait and bee swarm lure into your bee trap and hang it up. A distance of 10-15 feet above the ground is great. A pole is fine for the trap, but a tree branch is better. Make sure that there are no obstructions covering the entrance of your bee trap.
- You should regularly check the trap every few days for a swarm of bees. Once you have caught yourself a swarm, transfer it quickly into a beehive.
Setting up a bee trap is great when you want to have a new honeybee colony. It is a fun activity for beekeepers and gives you a fresh set of genes for your apiary. Use the information detailed here to improve your understanding of how bee traps work and become a better bee trapper.
What Makes a Good Bee Trap?
There are many manufacturers and sellers of bee traps. Beekeepers may find it difficult choosing between the available bee traps in the market. There are some qualities of bee traps you should look out for before making your purchase. The best bee traps have these qualities:
- The material used to make the bee trap is strong and durable. Wood pulp is a favorite material for bee traps. Other light wood products can also be used for your bee trap. Some bee traps have wires in them, or other mechanisms to keep bees inside even if they want to leave.
- The bee trap is weatherproof. It must protect the swarm you catch from strong winds and rain water. Swarming bees quickly seal up gaps and spaces in the trap with propolis and wax. They will leave the trap if they find it has large open spaces and gaps that are difficult to seal. It is not great as a new home for them.
- Bee traps should be easy to setup and hang. The best bee traps have hooks and loops that make it easy to hang them up a tree or pole. They are also easy to open, place bait and lures, and close up ready for a honeybee swarm.
- A good bee trap is light when empty. This makes it easy to hoist up a tree or pole when hanging the trap. It also makes the trap less weighty when bringing it down while it is full of bees. A heavy trap will be cumbersome to work with.
- Good bee traps have enough space for a swarm of bees, without being too bulky. If a swarm trap is too small, it will never catch you a swarm. If it is too big, it becomes bulky and difficult to work with. On average, the bee trap should have a volume of 40-50 liters. It should comfortably house a swarm that has up to thirty thousand bees.
We’ll now move on to discuss the best bee swarm traps that you can buy on the market. They have different design features so, it’s up to you to choose the ideal bee swarm trap that would suit you best.
Best Bee Swarm Traps
10. Blythewood Bee Company Wood Pulp Honeybee Swarm Trap
One of the easiest ways to capture bee swarms is through the use of a wood pulp swarm trap. A swarm trap is an effective tool in attracting and capturing bees. Blythewood Bee Company offers their Wood Pulp Honeybee Swarm Trap which is made of molded water-resistant fiber. It is a cone swarm trap type that looks like a flower pot. To use, simply set this swarm trap in a tree at 8 to 10 feet above the ground. Place a swarm lure to attract the queen bee which is always followed by her army of soldiers and workers. This trap requires regular inspection as bees tend to seal the gap between the base and the bucket. Once the bees are in place, simply detach the bucket from the base and transfer the bees in their new colony wherein they can thrive for a long time. It has dimensions of 16 x 16 x 16 inches and weighs about 5 pounds.Check Price
9. WALFRONT Black Bee Cage Swarm Trap
Keeping the bees safe while trapping them is essential in beekeeping. You have to make sure that your trap is effective enough to avoid them from getting hurt. The WALFRONT Black Bee Cage Swarm Trap is an ideal trap to keep bees safe. It is eco-friendly and made of high-quality materials. This bee swarm trap is water-resistant and can withstand wind making it an excellent tool to be used outdoors. The trap features a soft loop on top of the equipment which can be attached to a pole so you can place it into a bush or tree. There are three layers of wire to prevent bees from escaping. This bee swarm trap also features a bottom tie which can be easily closed once the swarm of bees is captured. The materials used for this trap includes leather, cloth, and steel wire. It comes in black. The top part of this trap measures 18.5 centimeters or 7.28 inches. The middle segment measures 27 centimeters or 10.63 inches. The maximum diameter is 33 centimeters or 13 inches. This bee swarm trap weighs 272 grams when empty.Check Price
8. FORSUN Black Denim Wild Bee Catcher Trap
A bee swarm trap that is worth the money is something that beekeepers look forward to. Many cheap bee swarm traps are only effective in the beginning but, will get damaged or destroyed easily. Only a few manufacturers have come up with affordable and quality bee swarm traps, and one of them is FORSUN. This black denim bee swarm trap is very affordable but offers a great deal of quality. It is made of 100% denim which is highly-durable. It has a length of 15 inches, a top diameter of 7 inches, and a bottom diameter of 13 inches. The trap weighs around 200 grams when empty. It features a soft loop on top of the equipment which can be attached to a pole so you can place it into a bush or tree. This bee swarm trap also features a bottom tie which can be easily closed once the swarm of bees is captured.Check Price
7. Sleeri Bee Cage Catching Bag
There are many bee cage traps on the market, but only a few can level in durability and performance with the Sleeri Bee Cage Catching Bag. It has an effective design that guarantees to catch and trap bees. The trap is made of cloth to ensure bee safety. It is practical and very easy to carry. This bee swarm trap features a soft loop on top of the equipment which can be attached to a pole so you can place it into a bush or tree. It also features a drawstring design to easily tighten the mouth once the bees are captured. To prevent a large number of bees from escaping, this trap is equipped with three layers of steel wire. The trap measures 40 centimeters or 16.15 inches in height. The top layer has a diameter of 18 centimeters or 7.09 inches. The middle layer has a diameter of 28 centimeters or 11.02 inches. The bottom layer has a diameter of 33 centimeters or 12.99 inches.Check Price
6. Fenteer Bee Cage to Catch Wild Bees
The Fenteer Black Cloth Bee Cage Trap is another piece of effective beekeeping equipment. It is a new product that boasts in effectivity and affordability which is perfect even for the pickiest beekeepers. It is made of high-quality denim which makes it durable and harmless to the bees. This bee swarm trap features a soft loop on top of the equipment which can be attached to a pole so you can place it into a bush or tree. It also features a drawstring design to easily tighten the mouth once the bees are captured. This trap measures 40 centimeters in height. It has a maximum diameter of 36 centimeters or 14.17 inches.Check Price
5. Rut Grenade Old Doc’s Honeybee Swarm Bait Hive with Lure Scents
This honeybee bait hive is made with organic materials and trace components to make it a suitable home for bees. When scout bees roam for a suitable place to live in, they always look for trace elements, shape, and size. Since this bee swarm trap is made of organic and natural elements, it gives off the right signals to attract swarming bee scouts. This package also includes two scent lures. The first scent lure features 32 trace elements which are the ideal elements for hive suitability. The second scent lure features a special pheromone that further pushes hive suitability. With these combinations, no scout bee can ignore this bee swarm trap. This trap measures 20 inches in length and 13 inches in width. The Rut Grenade Old Doc’s Honeybee Swarm Bait Hive with Lure Scents is one of the best bee swarm traps that you can find on the market. Its design that mimics a natural hive is an effective way to capture bees in nature.Check Price
4. Katoot 3-Layer Bee Cage Trap
If you’re looking for an effective bee swarm trap without breaking into your bank, the Katoot Cloth 3-Layer Bee Cage Trap is the ideal one for you. This bee swarm trap is made of high-quality materials and is very affordable. It features a black cloth covering that ensures the safety of the bees, three layers of steel wire to prevent bees from escaping, a soft loop on top for easy installation, and a drawstring function at the bottom to tighten once the bees are captured. This trap measures 41 centimeters or 16.15 inches in height. The first level has a diameter of 18 centimeters or 7.09 inches. The second level has a diameter of 28 centimeters or 11.02 inches. The third level has a diameter of 33 centimeters or 12.99 inches. This trap combines the best of both worlds in affordability and effectivity. It is one of the definitely one of the best bee swarm traps that you should consider.Check Price
3. Mann Lake 680949 Bee Swarm Trap
Here’s another bee swarm trap that you will love to use. This bee swarm trap is an ideal home for swarming bees because it resembles the hollow of a tree. It is made from molded fiber that can last multiple swarming seasons. Bees will find this trap irresistible especially with a swarm lure. The swarm lure, which is sold separately, releases a blend of pheromones that will surely attract swarming bees. Scout bees will immediately signal the other members of the colony to settle in their new home. The Mann Lake Bee 680949 Swarm Trap is an innovative beekeeping tool that will catch bees in no time. It’s a great addition to your equipment as you progress in the wonderful science of beekeeping. Don’t be left behind. Many beekeepers are using this trap and are getting excellent results.Check Price
2. Homyl Beekeeper’s Cloth Bee Cage Trap
The Homyl Beekeeper’s Cloth Bee Cage Trap is another standout for its affordability and effectivity. It is one of the best bee swarm traps and is consistently recommended by many beekeepers around the world. It is made of high-quality denim which makes it durable and harmless to the bees. This bee swarm trap features a soft loop on top of the equipment which can be attached to a pole so you can place it into a bush or tree. It also features a drawstring design to easily tighten the mouth once the bees are captured. This trap measures 40 centimeters in height. It has a maximum diameter of 36 centimeters or 14.17 inches. It’s also easy to use. Just look for a suitable tree or bush and place the cage about a few feet above the ground. You should regularly check the trap once you set it up.Check Price
1. Blythewood Bee Company Swarm Trooper Swarm Trap
The Blythewood Bee Company Swarm Trooper Swarm Trap is an innovative tool to capture bee swarms. This trap can contain a volume of 40 liters and it has a 2-inch entrance gap at the bottom. This trap features two tears of deep frame rests. To install, simply hang this trap into a tree branch about 10 to 15 feet above the ground and leave it for a while. Attract the bees by placing a swarm lure onto the frames and entrance. Regularly check this trap to avoid the bees from sealing gaps with wax. The Blythewood Bee Company Swarm Trooper Swarm Trap package also includes the swarm lure. The packaging dimensions are 28 x 24 x 2 inches. It weighs 4 pounds.Check Price
A Final Word
These are the best bee swarm traps available on the market today. Each one of these products offer the best value for your money. With these items, you no longer have to spend a lot of time searching for the ideal bee swarm trap. Alternatively, if you’re good with your hands, you may consider building your own bee swarm trap.
Do you own any of the bee swarm traps on this list? Which bee swarm trap(s) do you think should be added to this list? Leave a comment below and let us know.