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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    bridgewater , nova scotia
    Posts
    687

    Question When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    Hi I am going to do some grafting this year and i want to get to it ASAP , What is the recommended temps and best times to start doing this ?
    I have some drones starting to emerge in most of my wintered hives already.

    I live in Nova Scotia daytime lows are around 10 Celcius and highs of 22 + C

    Thanks

    Ben
    Ben Little <The Little Bee Farm> https://www.facebook.com/TheLittleBeeFarm
    Nova Scotia Canada

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,100

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    In my experience trying to do it as early as possible leads to failure. If I wait until there are obviously drones flying, it is usually time.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Camas, WA
    Posts
    1,945

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    For me it is when I have enough bees to make up mating nucs. I could graft earlier and I would have drones, but I don't have the resources to get enough mating nucs until about the 1st of May without drastically depleting by other hives. I also sell honey, so it can be a fine line. So normally I start the last week of April or the first week of May. Obviously this is very location dependent.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,716

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    When the drones are flying it is the time to do a graft. Do it when the temp is around room
    temperature. Not too hot and not too cold. I would say 22C is around that temp.
    Plan ahead to see how many mating nuc you can form. Because if you over graft then some
    queens will die. If under graft then you always can recombine the hive.
    This is a fun project that many have lots of experiences with. I learn a lot by following Lauri's
    posts. There are many methods and resources for the how to here. I don't know how you make
    their mating nucs. When you wait for the capped nurse bees to emerge that correspond to your
    queen hatch date then you will have minimal drifting. Working with older foragers is a bit of a
    headache when they are confused after removing the old queen.

    My first attempt:
    Attached Images Attached Images

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Stafford, Virginia
    Posts
    287

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    In Feb I put three frames of capped brood, two empty frames, and two queen cells in 26 Nucs. All but four were accepted. I think it was the easiest Nuc's I ever made.

    Jerry


    Quote Originally Posted by beepro View Post
    When the drones are flying it is the time to do a graft. Do it when the temp is around room
    temperature. Not too hot and not too cold. I would say 22C is around that temp.
    Plan ahead to see how many mating nuc you can form. Because if you over graft then some
    queens will die. If under graft then you always can recombine the hive.
    This is a fun project that many have lots of experiences with. I learn a lot by following Lauri's
    posts. There are many methods and resources for the how to here. I don't know how you make
    their mating nucs. When you wait for the capped nurse bees to emerge that correspond to your
    queen hatch date then you will have minimal drifting. Working with older foragers is a bit of a
    headache when they are confused after removing the old queen.

    My first attempt:

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,135

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    When swarm season starts in you're area, conditions should be good.
    Dan

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    bridgewater , nova scotia
    Posts
    687

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    Thanks all , I will just keep an eye out for drone population in apiary . I will not be using mating nucs , I will be putting the QC right into 5 frame nucs to make increases. I have to get good at grafting before I try to sell queens . I did choose my hive I want the queens from though and I can only hope that I get Queens that are half as good as Her. She is a Buckfast Queen and very productive , the hive didn't consume much food throughout winter and they are gentle and I made the most Honey off of them last year, plus I haven't had issues with their health either. nice Happy Bees : )

    Thanks

    Ben
    Ben Little <The Little Bee Farm> https://www.facebook.com/TheLittleBeeFarm
    Nova Scotia Canada

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Windham, Maine
    Posts
    102

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    Ben Little your still a bit further north than us. We started grafting last week. Second graft tomorrow. We had drones last week and definately more this week in our hives. 1st batch had about 50% started and capped. I know some of the larve did not transfer well as I was only using the tiniest larve I could find, some couldn't have been more than a few hours old. Going for just a little older next time to get a bit more royal jelly with them. Also found a few swarm cells with larva in them.

    Good luck with your queens!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    West Bath, Maine, United States
    Posts
    1,136

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    Ben Little,
    How did your 2 lb packages do with the cold?
    4 yrs, Peak 14, back to zip, T lite; godfather to brother's 3.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    bridgewater , nova scotia
    Posts
    687

    Default Re: When can beekeepers start to Graft?

    Saltybee
    If you get a chance to go on my facebook page listed below you will see pictures of their progress.
    I lost one because most of the drifted to another hive , leaving too small of a cluster as far as I know that was the cause.
    ALL of my Queens in the other hives were excepted and are still alive and doing what they do best.

    I do have 3 packages that have Queens laying multiple eggs. And yes it is a Queen doing it , They are hatching as worker bees.
    I hope they settle down soon.

    Ben
    Ben Little <The Little Bee Farm> https://www.facebook.com/TheLittleBeeFarm
    Nova Scotia Canada

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