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1st time grafting!

So my adventure with splits / grafting started 2 days ago.

I converted one of my 4 frame nucs to become a “breeder” colony.

In this i added in 1 half frame of honey half frame capped brood. 1 frame of nectar. 1 frame of of brood with open brood / young larvae and 1 frame of bee bread.

I shook in an extra couple of frames of bees from open brood from 2 different colonies to pack it out with nurse bees. i also added 800ml sugar syrup to really get them going (they didnt touch much of it)

So today i removed the open brood frame as i wanted to get all the royal jelly to do wet grafts into the queen cups. geeze they had made some queens in 2 days. so plenty of royal jelly.

i ended up grafting 10 cups. i guess soon we will see how well i did. hopefully i can get atleast 4 queens out if it because thats what i have room for. if i get more than that i will have spares.

They were very angry the first day. copped 1 sting before i thought better get my gloves. im.guessing the wet weather and wind and now cold we have just had they knew was coming but then again i didnt want to have to wait weeks and for it to be too late with when i need everything done by.

So now the grafts are in. 10 days time i will open it up. leave 1 queen cell in that hive and make a solid nuc from it. and i have 3 mating nucs to try out. i used the Chinese grafting tool. i think at the start i was trying to scoop the larvae too much when you didnt need to. the royal jelly and larvae sort of just stick to it.

Anyways that has been my adventures for the last 2 days. plenty of drones. and some of my hives have frames just half drone comb now.


Your pic is blurry but if they look like these they’ll do ok. I think I got 50% out of this batch a couple of years ago.

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:crossed_fingers: the larvae i got i could barely see so hopefully they become amazing queens. i wasnt sure how much royal jelly to put in either. but practice makes perfect.

Im going to open it up tomorrow and see how many they have taken on and double check the frame i returned to the original hive didnt have any queen cells left :rofl: i dont want to make that mistake.

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Nice, I’ve just finishing getting set up to graft this summer too. I’m going to use a 5f starter/finisher, doing 15 at a time. Look forward to seeing how you did.


so turns out they accepted 4! that’s the number i wanted. i started on both edges spso fair chance i didn’t give those larvae much chance with how Rough i was. so im pretty happy with 40% acceptance on my first try :slightly_smiling_face: hopefully they get well mated and return to the nucs safe :slightly_smiling_face::crossed_fingers:

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Good work. Can you show me a picture of the grafting frame? It appears you have the cells halfway down rather than at the top.

Yes thats correct, i dont have a photo of the full frame. but it was half drone comb that i cut out. then i thought it would be a waste top get rid of the comb above as i could put sugar syrup in or pollen sub in the cells.

I’ve made my grafting frame to be foundationless in the top half and cells below. I don’t need more than 15 cells at a time and I thought I’d try this configuration to stop the starter/finisher building comb around the queen cells.

Good point… i didnt think about that. i can see they have already attached the comb to the middle bar so therr is a chance they could continue the comb and build over it.

Hmmm i might reverse it. i will show an updated photo in 8 days time and hoe much cutting i habe to do but you make a good point there

Well today is day 10 so i had to take them out and transfer them to mating nucs. not the best day for it but when its day 10 then its day 10.
:slightly_smiling_face: let see how many make it back from their mating flights :crossed_fingers: all of them

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