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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
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    3,597

    Default How come his cells are bigger than mine? (pic)

    I'm a novice at queen rearing - just dabbled a little last year - read about it all winter, and decided to use the Joseph Clemens method. I grafted a few days ago, and here's what I had this afternoon:



    Not all that bad, but I was really hoping for more like his "regular" nice cells:



    Like Joseph Clemens I am using a queenless 5 frame medium starter finisher. I prepped it by filling it with frames of emerging brood and stores and shaking in lots of nurse bees then I put it in the location of the full sized hive that I pillaged for resources. So the entire work force of forragers for a strong hive crammed into a 5 frame medium. It's really full of bees. On top of that I've changed in new frames of emerging brood along with clinging nurse bees every few days - you have to check back in a couple of days because they will make queen cells. 24 hours before I grafted I put a frame of eggs/open brood in the middle between frames of pollen and nectar - then swapped the brood frame out for the cell frame with only 11 grafts. Plus I've fed this hive 1-1 continuously. There is tons of natural pollen in my area right now so I have not supplemented that.

    So why aren't my cells any bigger? Genetics? He did a better job grafting maybe?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Gilmer,TX USA
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    1,830

    Default Re: How come his cells are bigger than mine? (pic)

    What is Joe's method?

    mike
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    collbran, co
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    465

    Default Re: How come his cells are bigger than mine? (pic)

    looks like there not done capping the cells they will grow...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Cookeville, TN, USA
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    Default Re: How come his cells are bigger than mine? (pic)

    Quote Originally Posted by franktrujillo View Post
    looks like there not done capping the cells they will grow...
    Really? I didn't know that. I thought when they were capped that's it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    FRASER VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA
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    1,287

    Default Re: How come his cells are bigger than mine? (pic)

    Those cells are capped and will not grow.

    Jean-Marc

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
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    FRASER VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA
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    1,287

    Default Re: How come his cells are bigger than mine? (pic)

    The cells are about half full of royal jelly and not 100% full. Some bees are better at it than others. Joe's seem to have more royal jelly in it than yours.

    So you took out the frame of eggs and larvae just before grafting? The bees eats pollen that is converted to royal jelly or worker jelly to feed larvae. No larvae no need to feed on pollen and less royal jelly is fed. Maybe try keeping the larvae in next to the graft, don't swap it out.

    The cells are not fantastic but they are not pooe either. If there were only 2 grades, pass and fail I'd say those cells are a pass.

    Bees also learn how to make cells. That same hive could make bigger and better cells next go around.

    Jean-Marc

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    dadeville, alabama, USA
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    1,163

    Default Re: How come his cells are bigger than mine? (pic)

    As a queen breeder, the secret is this....Feed your queenless starter/finishing nuc 1-1 syrup to the fifth day. Any later the bees will "wax" the cells. Two of your frames in the nuc should be solid frames of fresh pollen. The more pollen, the more protein that the bees have to feed the larvae. The more pollen, the more protein the young bees have to consume. The more pollen available to be consumed, the more royal jelly the young bees will produce from the mandibular glands that can be used to feed the graft. Thus better quality queen cells and queens will be produced. I am with Jean Marc, those cells do not look that bad. Also Joseph has been keeping bees and grafting cells longer than even I have been alive. So there is truth that practice makes perfect. Keep at it, we need more queen and bee breeders. TED

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
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    3,597

    Default Re: How come his cells are bigger than mine? (pic)

    What I mean by Joseph Clemens method is as he describes in this thread.

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