The Greatest Rubber Band Beekeeping Trick

Introduction: The Greatest Rubber Band Beekeeping Trick

This instructable is sort of technical and very specific for beekeepers. The few beekeepers that go out and do cut outs. When someone has an unwanted hive of honey bees living in a place where its not wanted. Like the one in the picture above between the floors in a house. This is an insulation hole that insulation was not blown into the bees found it and moved in.

A cut out is like it sounds a beekeeper will come and cut out all the honeycomb and take the bees home to a new hive.

The trick is to reuse the comb in the frames of a new hive. This is done by attaching the comb being cut out to commercial frames. There is several ways of doing this. The easiest way I have found uses a rubber band.

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Step 1: Ask a Friend for Help

This is one of the most common ways.

After the combs is cut out of the old hive one person holds the the comb (with bees) between the frame and a friend stretches a rubber band around the frame trapping the comb. A third person takes the picture.

As you can tell with the pictures there are no bees on or honey in the comb. If there were it would be hard to find a volunteer with the rubber bands, Let alone someone to take a closeup picture. Bees are so intent in what there doing that they won't leave the comb so its a do it yourself job all you need is four hands or a trick

But is there a way to do it yourself ?

Step 2: Ok So Your Friends Won't Help

What, help you which 50,000 bees?

I think I have to clean out the garage or defrost the fridge or look at that, the cd need to be alphabetized. Sorry can't make it.

Step 3: Well When All Your Friends Have Run Away This Is What You Can Do.

You will need

Some small nails or tacks

A length of string

A rubberband

A frame (old frames work best(re-use re-duce)

Step 4:

Start by nailing five the brads along the top of one side of the frame. Don't drive them home leave them one or two mm proud(sticking out)

Repeat with four more brads evenly placed on the bottom.

Tie one end of a string on to the top left nail. Lace the sting from top to bottom like your shoes and wind it around the last nail.

Drive the nails home. and flip the frame over.

Step 5: Second Side

Repeat the nails on the top and bottom of the opposite side.

This time when you lace the frame tie on a rubber band just before the last nail and loop the band over the last nail.

Don't drive the nails home. LEAVE THEM STICKING OUT. Except the first nail that one can be sent home(upper right opposite the on with the rubber band.

Step 6: How to Use the Frame.

When your ready to use the frame. Unlace the side with the rubber band. Lay the cut comb on the stings so that it is between the frames. When full of comb you can lace up the open side using two fingers to slip the rubber band over the last nail. Done

This is the coolest part. If the queen is collected then the bees will start attaching the comb to the frames. if the queen was missed they won't work the wax much and you will have to re-queen. Check in two or three days.

The bees will chew through the strings after a while and you can pull them out.

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    2 Discussions


    4 years ago

    Great idea. I have captured a few of my own swarms, but never did a cut out. This looks like it would work much better.


    We've been beekeeping for a few years now but have never moved comb like this. Love the rubber band idea, and checking the comb to figure out whether you have the queen is awesome. Thanks!