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Thread: Grafting Eggs

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Casper, WY
    Posts
    526

    Post

    Hi Guys,

    The recent discussions concerning Jay Smiths queen rearing book revived an old train of thought. What about grafting the eggs rather than the larva?

    A grafted egg would have the early feeding advantages described by Jay Smith. And using grafting techniques would allow the convenience of plastic cups, etc. for large scale production.

    Steve Taber designed a set of forceps that would grab an egg without pinching it. He used it to graft eggs with mixed results. Success was lower than when using larva and some intermorphs were reared. I built a set of these forceps for myself.

    I suspect that the use of forceps damaged or disturbed the egg in some manner as the eggs aren't as uniformly sized as one would think. I've wondered if another technique, like using an eye dropper to hydraulically scavange eggs from their cells, or maybe even suck them off the a water surface and deposit them in a queen cup might work better.

    Anyone with any thoughts or experience?

    Regards
    Dennis

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Mobile, Alabama
    Posts
    536

    Post

    Dennis,

    I've never actually grafted eggs, but I have on two occasions transferred eggs to the starter using a nicot system due to time constraints, and both times I came back to empty cups.
    Rob Koss

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,593

    Post

    My experience is the same as ikeepbees. It's easy enough to graft eggs with a Nicot or a Jenter. I have done it many times when I had some eggs, no more larvae and some space left on the cell bar. I've never seen them build a cell with the egg.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    sk canada
    Posts
    5

    Post

    I had this same thought a few years ago, so I experimented and grafted 45 cells using the eggs (hoping to get a better sucess rate)checked on them 8 days later and not one took out of the 45.

    Dave

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