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Tempting settled bees into a hive


There is a wild bees nest hanging from a tree branch near me. unfortunately it is out of reach without a cherry picker.

We are going into winter and so it can’t be the ideal location. Is there any way of tempting them into swarming? Luring them into a hive?


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Dextershed is right: If they have comb already it would be near impossible to drawn them down. If they don’t have comb yet then set up a swarm box or empty hive and fill it with old drawn comb. Lemongrass oil is a good lure. Lighty put some oil on a cotton ball and place it in the back of your box on top of a frame. Then spread a bit of the oil on the entry way. I caught a swarm this spring by baiting a hive. It took 3 days and all of a sudden bees were inside.
Do you have a shotgun? Through the internet I know a man in Virginia that posts videos of himself shooting down branches filled with bees. He is suited up, lays out a big tarp, and places a bee box with frames on the tarp. When the branch lands on the tarp he waits to see if the bees march in to the box because that means the queen landed in there. If they don’t then he finds a clump of bees where the queen is and scoops them into the box. The rest of the bees just walk in. I don’t own a gun so have never tried it but others use it as a routine method for those bees too high up.


wow it sounds extreme, but then again I’m not used to guns, and have never been in contact with guns.


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If you do try it you have to share :slight_smile:


But without the suit, of course. :laughing:


Must be brilliant returning to a bait hive and finding bees!

Sadly I don’t own a gun. I presume this technique is for swarms as well? Can’t imagine its easy to find the queen in a mash of broken comb!

I love the idea of seeing someone suited up with a shotgun under their arm… i,m sure the police would get a few panicked calls.


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Here’s the nest… beautiful example of the comb structure.

Pure speculative ideas thread: solar heating and cooling for beehives?


Now that I see a picture…get a cherry picker!!


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OMG NO!!! Not even if you have full health coverage. Sorry, you just put me into “mom” mode.


How about tricking them into thinking there is a bushfire… isn’t smoke meant to trick them into gorging themselves on honey to prepare to leave the hive?

If I lit a smokey bonfire do you think I could trick them into swarming?


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Looks like a gum tree so I am assuming you are in Australia somewhere. @Dunc, I reckon you have two options. 1. Hire a cherry picker as has been suggested or 2. Wait till spring and setup a bait hive or two and hope to catch a swarm from them. The comb is too established they won’t leave and if you force them they may all die.


Yep, i’m in australia. Sounds like i need to be patient… i was thinking if i could get them to swarm i could safely access the comb using ropes but sounds like the risk of killing them is too high.



Well if you can safely access the comb, then it is highly probable you can carefully cut the comb away from the tree and place it in a large box with the bees. Then once on the ground, carefully place the comb into empty frames using elastic bands to hold it in place and insert the frames into a hive. Leave the hive for a week or two to become established.


I so want to!

I reckon I could only get on top of the branch, so cutting it would be possible but I reckon getting up there in a bee suit with a smoker and finding a way to catch the nest is beyond me.