Here I am going to try and explain how to build a very cheap and easy and effective catch hive for catching a swarm of honey bees for free, and further down, a more elaborate plywood construction.
At this time of year, the end of April, in the UK at least, the honey bee queen may fly out of the hive with a lot of the flying bees to find a new home. A load of new Queens, young bees, larvae, eggs and pupae are left behind in the old Hive to keep the old Colony going.
It is possible to catch Bee swarms by creating a nice looking home for them and incorporating some kind of lure to fool them into thinking that bees had previously occupied the structure.
*we caught bees in this box in may this year (2014).
If you want to build my more elaborate plywood version, please CLICK HERE.
Step 1: Materials
Step 2: Construction
Step 3: Wrap It All Up
Step 4: Entry Hole and Breather Holes
Step 5: Finished Catch-Box
Step 6: Location Location Location.
A couple of useful things to note:
Ensure that the lure frame is from a disease free hive.
If you catch a swarm, check to see if the queen is marked with a coloured dot as it might actually belong to another beekeeper.
Have a plan of action in place for the eventuality that you do catch a swarm of bees. Consider making contact with a local experienced bee keeper or joining a local association.