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  1. #101
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
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    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    45,454

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    Using the Jenter, I have transfered eggs (since they are glued to the bottom and the bottom of the cell is removable). The bees just remove the eggs. They feed the larvae. If you transfer them just before they hatch, MAYBE some might be fed, but I have not had any luck with them as eggs.

    You really can't graft eggs as they are glued to the cell and standing up. How would you transfer them without some kind of graftless system. You can with the method that this thread started with, but it does no good, in my experience.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  2. #102
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Ojai, California
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    905

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    Off topic question to Michael Bush - what grafting tool do you prefer to graft larvae and why? Thanks, Casey.

    On-topic question to Old Timer - you mention this method produces better queens than grafting...what differences do you notice most?

  3. #103
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    Jul 2010
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    A better mating %.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  4. #104
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    Dec 2010
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    Ojai, California
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    905

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    Thank you, Old Timer, and a belated for post #71 & #73. A great picture tells so much. I went and made a 120-degree knife out of banding machine strap for cutting the cell walls down.

    While I'm at it, Thanks to AR Beekeeper for post #78 - the black Pierco foundation + new comb tip. I'll definitely try it, as my eyesight is about as Old Timer's. Thanks to Blackbrood for pix of your queen bank frame & cages. I'll make a second attempt with the 1" x1 7/8" measurements and use fine mesh screen. Thanks Barry Tolson for post #82 and Old Timer for post #83. Thank you David LaFerney for the pix in posts #93 & #98 and to Michael Bush and Old timer for the answers. It appears 20-hour to 24-hour old larvae are premium candidates for grafting.

    I see why Oppeneimer insisted the scientists at Los Alamos share ideas often. he believed in the cross-pollination of ideas. Together we make leaps and bounds, especially when we have a few minds of their caliber in the conversation.

  5. #105
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    Aug 2002
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    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    >Off topic question to Michael Bush - what grafting tool do you prefer to graft larvae and why?

    I use the Chinese grafting tool most often. It picks up the royal jelly along with the larvae and since you never really touch the larvae you don't damage it. It's also much easier to pick up with the Chinese tool. The tool is basically a flexible flat tip that slides under everything. You push it to the bottom and it just bends and slides under the larvae. Then when you are ready to put the larvae where you want, you push the tip and it pushes the small spot of royal jelly and slides it all off.

    I have several others and have been known to use them but they don't work very well on really young larvae and they don't pick up the royal jelly.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #106
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    Dec 2010
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    Ojai, California
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    905

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    And Thank you Michael Bush! I used modified teriyaki skewers (notched like fish hook barbs but not sharp) like they were chopsticks to get the larvae out last year and primed my home made Laidlaw-style queen cell cups with royal jelly. I also tried a "syringe" made from a straw and a dowel to suck them out, but no luck at all with that. While I had some success, it could stand improving. I will need a lot more queens this year. I'm making more queen frames, mini nuc mating boxes and frames, and large, push-in introducing cages for the capacity. I'll try Old Timer's cut-cell method, grafting off the black Pierco foundation, and grafting out of cells. I guess I'll get a collection of hooks and Chinese grafting tools, and keep records of everything. Thanks for that description of the use!

  7. #107
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    Aug 2002
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    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    I would buy at least five (they are cheap) of the Chinese grafting tools. Out of that you'll probably get two that are really good, one that is ok and two that don't work... but it's worth it. You can steal spare parts off of the ones that don't work. Whenever I'm at a bee conference I pick through the ones on display and only buy the good ones...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #108
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Reno, NV USA
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    2,310

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    I remember reading on this site once that there are two versions of the Chinese grafting tool with one being garbage and the other being much better. I don't remember the markings, however, used to distinguish the two.
    I use the Swiss surgical model from Betterbee but it doesn't pick up much jelly. I dhave done better than 90% with this tool and found it to be less clumsy than the cheaper stainless models. The Swiss surgical model was over $30 if I remember correctly and I bought three just in case they become unavailable. They used to offer a left hand version but I believe they stopped. I wish they still offered both because it is handy switching hands when the larvae have the C shape in the opposite direction.

  9. #109
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    Jul 2010
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting





    Day 27. The final product, mated, laying, and ready to go into a customers hive. Out of 24 cells that were put out 23 are now laying, that's despite some bad weather so a decent result. These black ones never look as impressive as an italian but she is a good example of her breed and will get a litle bigger over the next week or two and when she takes over a full sized hive. She will be capable of solidly laying up two deeps. The green pen is not a date code just the only color I have.
    Last edited by Oldtimer; 01-31-2011 at 02:39 PM.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  10. #110
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    Beautiful. Bravo.

  11. #111
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Deposit,NY
    Posts
    110

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    Oldtimer, that is a beautiful queen. I'm interested in her lineage as she much resembles a queen I got from a removal I did last year.

    Once again, thanks for the grand schooling!
    Cheers,
    Paul VanSlyke

  12. #112
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    The queen it was bred from is almost pure carniolan, the rest being italian. A really nice bee, docile in the extreme and packing in a lot more honey than the other hives.

    Such an outstanding queen I just had to use it as a breeder.
    Last edited by Oldtimer; 02-01-2011 at 02:50 AM.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  13. #113
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Tacoma, Wa
    Posts
    67

    Exclamation Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    Hay oldtimer I have a ? Were can i buy a queen frame bank like yours or find plans to build one my self. thanks i love your thread
    Jon Taylor

  14. #114
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    Jul 2010
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    Hi Jon, I don't think they can be bought, that I know of. What I'll do in the next few days, I'll post up proper plans to build the whole thing it will just be a few days till I'm next where I keep that stuff then I'll get it & post up all measurements.

    I have seen other queen bank systems advertised online but they didn't look very good to me although to be fair I haven't tried them.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  15. #115
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    Sep 2010
    Location
    crawfordville florida, wakulla co,usa
    Posts
    1

    Question Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    hey...my operation is just ten hives this year...i'm learning all the time... i'll make my own queens this year.. thanks.. another problem i have now is that screened bottom boards are stripping much pollen off the incoming bees..its winter now and losing this much pollen can't be a good thing.. we are in an area of beetle and varroa infest...
    thanks .. ken

  16. #116
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    If it's falling through the screen it's probably mostly stuff they were throwing out anyway. But you're right, a buildup under the screen can attract pests where the bees can't clean it.

    Thought I'd post a pic of an italian I've raised the same way, notice the carniolans look smaller and less robust, yet the interesting thing is that in season these carniolans can outlay a bigger italian.



    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  17. #117
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Starke, Florida, USA
    Posts
    127

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    could you take a pic of the queen excluder you used on (day 0)? the one that kept the queen in those three frames. thanks.

  18. #118
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    Jul 2010
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    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting




    Here's what it looks like from underneath. Before assembly a saw cut is made in the two end pieces of the super so the queen excluder can be slid into place.Then the excluder is bent over as per the pic and one queen excluder happens to fit just right for a 3 frame division. The only other thing required is a hole drilled in the box into the queen compartment as a drone escape.

    In most commercial breeder hives the frames hung in the queen compartment are blanked out with wood and only have a piece of comb in the middle perhaps 5 inches square, to restrict the queens laying. But the hive pictured just has normal frames which means it is self sustaining, I don't ever have to add any bees to it.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  19. #119
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Starke, Florida, USA
    Posts
    127

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    thanks so much, really looking forward to trying this method very soon.

  20. #120
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    sheffield, illinois,usa
    Posts
    32

    Default Re: Raising Queen Cells Without Grafting

    most definintly going to give this a shot, i have a cloak board and it came with instruction, but just for the sake of doing it, thinking i may try and graft some cells too, am going to live in a camper this summer, right next to the bee hives and will be able to do a lot of observation and learn as much as i can, this is going to be an exciting fourth season and realy looking forward to it, this thread along with the book i purchased and your posted pictorial and information is very helpfull, i know i can do this, just need to dive in.

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