Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]
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  1. #1
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    Aug 2014
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    Default Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Just wondering if I grafted the correct age larva. Click to enlarge or: https://imgur.com/a/mZtQC

    Screen Shot 2018-04-06 at 1.53.22 PM.jpg
    4th Yr. 8 hives. Italian/Carniolan apiary. 3 loss over 4 yr. W.NC location.
    https://instagram.com/jacquelinehinshaw/

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  3. #2
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    Oct 2011
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    Grayson, KY
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    I can't tell much by your pic. The larva should be not much bigger than an egg and should be comma shaped. If they are c shaped they are too old.

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Looks about right to me, maybe a little older but within the range. I plan on doing my first grafting as soon as this stupid weather breaks. Forecast is for some snow tonight. In April. In Virginia. Very anxious to get the queen rearing process started in earnest. Splits are only producing a few cells, no extras to harvest.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  5. #4
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    Oct 2016
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    Sioux City, Iowa, USA
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    I hear ya, this Winter/Spring has been pretty nuts. I had planned on throwing paddies and syrup in my hives a few weeks ago but mother nature decided otherwise

  6. #5
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    Jan 2012
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    Roy, Wa
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Lauri Miller.
    Carniolan Hybrids. Glenn, Latshaw & Wild lines.

  7. #6
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    the larva photo in the op appears bigger than what i choose for grafts, but its hard to say because of it being in a grafting cup and not in a cell.

    i'm looking for not much bigger than an egg as biggun mentioned.

    lauri's photo shows perfect sized just hatched larvae. nice!
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  8. #7
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    Apr 2017
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Lauri's larvae look freshly hatched, which of course is perfect for grafting. By comparison, the ones in jhinshaw's cell cups do look large, but are they too large? I would have guessed about 12 -24 hours since hatching and my understanding is that 1 day old larvae are still viable candidates for grafting, even though freshly hatched is best. Squarepeg?

    Regardless of our opinions, the OP will know in a few days if her larvae were too old or not.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    i'm not sure jwp, i only take 20 grafts at a time and i can usually find enough tiny ones.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Trying about 24 first time around. Hoping for 6 or so to take. Anything special to do to the cell bar and cups other than put them in the cell builder for 24 hours before grafting for the bees to polish?

    Jhinshaw, how many cells did you graft for your first attempt? Please keep us posted on the progress. I am personally very interested in how things are going as I hope to be just 4 or 5 days behind you.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  11. #10
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    Anything special to do to the cell bar and cups other than put them in the cell builder for 24 hours before grafting for the bees to polish?
    that's what i do. putting the frame you want to take grafts from in the builder for a few hours prior to grafting might make the jelly pools a little thicker which allows for easier pick up onto the grafting tool and less of a tendency for them to dry out.

    about half way down this page is another good photo of a just hatched larvae alongside an older larva:

    https://www.honeybeesonline.com/queen-rearing-part-2/
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  12. #11
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    May 2013
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    Laurel Hill, Fl
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Quote Originally Posted by Lauri View Post
    Great Pic, thank you!
    Robbin NW Florida(8A) / 14 hives / 5 Nucs / 6th Year / T {OAV & MMK}

  13. #12
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    May 2013
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    Laurel Hill, Fl
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Thanks squarepeg
    "putting the frame you want to take grafts from in the builder for a few hours prior to grafting might make the jelly pools a little thicker"
    Hadn't seen that little tip before...
    Thanks
    Robbin NW Florida(8A) / 14 hives / 5 Nucs / 6th Year / T {OAV & MMK}

  14. #13
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    Tallapoosa, Georgia, USA
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    The bees will let you know if the larvae you chose is too old. That said, you'll make better queens from using the very smallest, newly hatched that you can find. Squarepeg mention a great way to get a good sized pool of royal jelly surrounding the larvae. This will help you to be able to slide a grafting tool underneath and pick up the larvae and then also get it to slide off without flipping it over and killing it.

    Great picture Lauri!
    Working to propagate my survivors and staying treatment free USDA Zone 7b

  15. #14
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    Aug 2014
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    Trying about 24 first time around. Hoping for 6 or so to take. Anything special to do to the cell bar and cups other than put them in the cell builder for 24 hours before grafting for the bees to polish?

    Jhinshaw, how many cells did you graft for your first attempt? Please keep us posted on the progress. I am personally very interested in how things are going as I hope to be just 4 or 5 days behind you.
    I grafted 6 cells my first try. The weather dipped to around a high of 45 for the past two days so I haven't popped the nuc open to check the status of the grafts but I will be doing that tomorrow. I'll update with a pic and maybe graft again if I need. Good luck with your progress and feel free to share how it goes! I learn so much from others. I'm a bit worried that my grafts now look to be "c" shaped because they got a bit squashed as I was trying to pick them up with the chinese tool.
    4th Yr. 8 hives. Italian/Carniolan apiary. 3 loss over 4 yr. W.NC location.
    https://instagram.com/jacquelinehinshaw/

  16. #15
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg View Post
    that's what i do. putting the frame you want to take grafts from in the builder for a few hours prior to grafting might make the jelly pools a little thicker which allows for easier pick up onto the grafting tool and less of a tendency for them to dry out.

    about half way down this page is another good photo of a just hatched larvae alongside an older larva:

    https://www.honeybeesonline.com/queen-rearing-part-2/
    Thanks so much for this tip!
    4th Yr. 8 hives. Italian/Carniolan apiary. 3 loss over 4 yr. W.NC location.
    https://instagram.com/jacquelinehinshaw/

  17. #16
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Quote Originally Posted by Lauri View Post

    Thanks Lauri!
    4th Yr. 8 hives. Italian/Carniolan apiary. 3 loss over 4 yr. W.NC location.
    https://instagram.com/jacquelinehinshaw/

  18. #17
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Too big. Once it forms a closed "C" it's too big. Note that the really small ones, like in Lauri's post, the "C" is not closed - these would be the correct size.
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

  19. #18
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    Trying about 24 first time around. Hoping for 6 or so to take. Anything special to do to the cell bar and cups other than put them in the cell builder for 24 hours before grafting for the bees to polish?

    Jhinshaw, how many cells did you graft for your first attempt? Please keep us posted on the progress. I am personally very interested in how things are going as I hope to be just 4 or 5 days behind you.

    UPDATE: only 1 of my 6 cells has been a success so I'm going to try tomorrow or the following day to graft again lol. Guess they were in fact tooo old!
    4th Yr. 8 hives. Italian/Carniolan apiary. 3 loss over 4 yr. W.NC location.
    https://instagram.com/jacquelinehinshaw/

  20. #19
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    Apr 2017
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    Aylett, Virginia
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Nothing like a little experience. As a first time grafter, I am only expecting a 25% success rate as I'm sure I will kill most of the larvae trying to learn how to use the grafting tool. Cell bar goes in tomorrow for polishing and grafting will be on Friday. Cell builder colony has gotten mean being queenless now for just over a week. Probably did not help that I also cleaned up a buch of drone larva laden burr comb at the same time. Donor hive queen is all black. Hope I get more like her.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  21. #20
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    Aug 2014
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    Default Re: Grafted for the first time today. [PIC]

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    Nothing like a little experience. As a first time grafter, I am only expecting a 25% success rate as I'm sure I will kill most of the larvae trying to learn how to use the grafting tool. Cell bar goes in tomorrow for polishing and grafting will be on Friday. Cell builder colony has gotten mean being queenless now for just over a week. Probably did not help that I also cleaned up a buch of drone larva laden burr comb at the same time. Donor hive queen is all black. Hope I get more like her.
    Good luck! Can't wait to hear how it goes for you! I'm sure you'll do great.
    4th Yr. 8 hives. Italian/Carniolan apiary. 3 loss over 4 yr. W.NC location.
    https://instagram.com/jacquelinehinshaw/

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