Nuc Box, Bait Hive, Swarm Trap
Note: most of these are sold locally and are picked up by appointment. However, we now can ship these flat-packed (unassembled) to the lower 48 states!
Many beekeepers find the need to make a split, bait a box to catch one of their own swarms, and have small equipment available for transporting and temporarily housing bees. We have settled on a 10-bar box to be our standard nuc box size.
These nuc boxes and swarm traps/bait hives are constructed to be interchangeable with our top bar hives. This allows you to allow the bees to build comb and establish themselves in these smaller spaces, then transfer the bees and top bars with comb to your hive or a Langstroth hive. With swarm traps, this means there is no rush to get the bees to your apiary. In fact, when you catch a swarm, you may decide to let them build comb on the top bars and establish the colony before transferring them to a larger hive.
Top Bars: The boxes are constructed with the same 19" top bars with comb guides as our standard hives, making the parts interchangeable. The box comes with 10 top bars. They are made to fit snug with either all 10 bars or 9 bars and one follower.
Follower: The nuc box comes with one solid follower. These small boxes are also made so the followers fit tightly and will certainly not allow a queen to wonder to the other side of the box. However, if only one colony is being housed in the nuc box, you may use a notched or drilled follower to allow bees to access feed inside the box. It may also be used without a follower.
Cover/Insulation: Each box is covered with a metal roof that is lined with 1" rigid insulation. This protects the bars from both loosing heat while being overwintered and overheating the bars in the summer.
Bottom: The bottom of each box has a solid bottom
Entrances: Each of these has two 3/4" corked entrances. These are drilled on the bottom of each end wall. Having one small hole makes it easy for the bees to defend. Above each entrance is a corked and screened vent hole that can be opened. This can release the hive's scent, drawing potential robbers away from the main entrance. These two sets of entrances also allows the beekeeper to put a follower board in the middle to create two mating nucs.