Saturday, June 22, 2013

Top Bar Stand and a Swarm Catch !

Hey !

We had some excitement today.  First, I was spending some great time in my shop constructing some new top bar hive components.  I built a very sturdy platform for them and some follower boards that act as feeding ports.  Let's take a look at the stand first.

Simple Stand with 2X4s

These simple follow the 30 degree cut at the base to match the shape of the hive body.  The two 2X4s offer lateral support. These are 28 inches high.

Hive Body Secure and Level

Now you see the top bar hive body resting securely on its stand.  Rock solid and its about 35 inches tall.  Very easy height to work with.

Follower board Feeder Port

Here is my idea for a follower board that acts as a feeding port at the same time!
Just add some feet to the bottom of the follower board with the correct spacing for your feeder.  I use a simple 'floor' that the feeder sits on cut with the same 30 degree s sides so that it fits snugly in the hive body.


Later in the afternoon - one of my hives decided that it was time to swarm.   This was a total surprise.  However, I was ready to retrieve it.
I improvised a simple swarm catch net with a pillow case and a wire hanger on the end of a long wooden stick.
Swarm Catcher Net

Then I fixed on the wire using some duct tape.  Great stuff.

Nothing by Net !

This is me catching the main ball of bees to drop them into my swarm box.

The new 'temporary' home

It took a few hours, by they all marched into their new home.  Tomorrow I will take them up to the main yard.

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