Deploying a swarm box is simplicity itself. I use a standard size box with bottom and top. Into the box I place one dark old frame of comb. Also into the box I put a small cosmetic cotton bud stick, the end of which has been soaked in two or three drops of lemongrass pure essential oil (available amongst other things from health food shops. A tiny bottle will last forever). The scent is apparently very attractive to bees. I place my box high on a brick fence, adjacent to an orange tree which flowers heavily in springtime. Usually the odd bee walks into the hive to have a look. As the box is visible from the kitchen window we have noticed in the day or two before a swarm comes into the box there will be a large number of bees inspecting the box. Presumably these are scouts who go back to the swarm and say; “Girls, have I found a great place for us to live”.
Once a swarm has entered I wait until the evening and then move the box to its final position. For the first days I reduce the entrance to very small and place a small branch across the entrance. The bees seem to reorientate to the new position very quickly and whilst for a few days some bees will fly back to the original position of the swarm box, they seem to also remember the new position.
Meeting Address: Doncaster Secondary College, 123 Church Rd, Doncaster 3108