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Pearls Farming : Pearls Glossary

Pearls Farming : Pearls Glossary

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Indonesia south sea pearls wholesale – Miss Joaquim Pearls – whatsapp +6287865026222
  • Baroque: irregularly shaped pearls.
  • Circlé: pearls which have concentric grooves around the perimeter.
  • Fouling, biofouling: small plants and animals that colonize the shell of the pearl oyster thereby becoming a nuisance.
  • Gape: involuntary relaxation of a pearl oyster’s shell, often as a result of spending too much time out of the water or a weakening of the adductor muscle.
  • Gonad: reproductive organ, produces either sperm or eggs.
  • Grafting: also known as seeding or nucleus implantation; a surgical procedure in which the nucleus and a small piece of mantle tissue are inserted into the gonad thus starting development of a cultured pearl.
  • Half-pearl: a pearl of a half-spherical or semi-spherical shape attached to the shell, forming naturally when an irritant is covered with nacre.
  • Larva, larvae: early developmental stage of the pearl oyster life cycle when the pearl oyster is a microscopic and free-swimming organism. This period lasts 2-3 weeks.
  • Keshi: means “poppy” in Japanese, a by-product of the grafting process, produced when the implanted piece of mantle tissue secretes nacre around itself, resulting in small, irregularly shaped pearls without a nucleus.
  • Mabe: dome-shaped secretions of nacre developed over an artificial form attached to the shell. Sometimes also called half-pearls (see half-pearls).
  • Metamorphosis: developmental stage involving anatomical and behavioral changes transforming the free-swimming larvae to a settled adult.
  • Nacre: also called mother-of-pearl; the iridescent material lining the inside of mollusk shells, composed of calcium carbonate crystals (aragonite) deposited between layers of organic material; one of the types of shell material formed by the epithelial cells in the mantle tissue.
  • Pearl sac: the tissue containing the nacre-producing epithelial cells that enclose the developing pearl. The pearl sac develops out of the transplanted piece of mantle tissue (the graft) inserted into the gonad during grafting. This term may also be used to refer to the extreme end of the gonad where the nucleus is inserted.
  • Speculum: the tool used to open the pearl oyster shell.
  • Spat: juvenile pearl oyster.
  • Spawn, spawning: release of eggs or sperm by the pearl oyster into the water.

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Article source: The Basic Methods of Pearl Farming, Author: A Layman’s ManualMaria Haws, Ph.D. (Director, Pearl Research and Training Program, Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resources Center, University of Hawaii at Hilo, Hilo, HI 96720 USA, Center for Tropical and Subtropical Aquaculture, Publication No. 127, March 2002)
For Questions and answer you can contact & chat with us on:

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Pearls Farming : Selling pearls and pearl products

Pearls Farming : Selling pearls and pearl products

indonesia south sea pearls cultivation
Indonesia south sea pearls cultivation

Most farmers sell pearls directly to buyers, who will often attend the harvest, particularly if the harvest is a large one or many farmers are participating. The buyer will want to grade the pearls, meaning evaluate the quality of each pearl. The farmer can also market his pearls directly to jewelers or wholesalers, but this requires travel and a good knowledge of pearl grading and pricing.

Pearls are usually sold as lots, although individual pearls may also be sold. A harvest will usually be divided into lots of pearls of similar size and quality. The buyer will then pay a set price for the entire lot. Some buyers will want to buy only individual pearls that are large or of particularly high quality. If the best pearls are removed from the lot, it may be difficult to sell the remaining pearls since there will be fewer choice pearls to tempt the buyer. Until a farmer has a good knowledge of pearl grading and marketing, it will generally be advantageous to sell the pearls in lots.

The quality and price of a pearl depends on several factors: size, shape, luster, color, orient and texture. A “good” or “high” quality pearl is large, round, lustrous, smooth without flaws and possesses an iridescent quality.

Size is one of the main determinants of price.

White_South_Sea_Pearls_Wholesale_Miss_Joaquim_Lombok Pearls_Indonesia
Indonesia south sea pearls wholesale – Miss Joaquim Pearls – whatsapp +6287865026222

Pearl sizes are measured by the diameter in millimeters. They may also be weighed in mommes (3.75 grams) or grams. Large pearls (over 12 mm) are much higher-priced than the smaller ones. For example, in 1992 the average price of a black pearl rated as fine, measuring 8 mm (0.32 in), was $285; while a 9-mm (0.36 in) pearl of the same quality was worth $385 – a difference of $100 for a 1-mm (0.6 in) increase in size. The next size pearl (10 mm or 0.4 in) was worth $560, an increase of $175 for a 1-mm (0.6 in) increase in size. This progressively greater difference in price continues as pearls get larger, explaining the reasons an experienced technician will be careful to use the largest size nucleus possible. Every millimeter difference in size can mean a substantial increase in price. Pearls harvested so early that the nacre layer is very thin, are not only smaller, but are also considered to be of lower quality because a thin nacre layer can easily crack. The luster and orient of thin nacre may also be of lesser quality. Your reputation as a pearl producer can suffer by attempting to sell pearls with thin nacre. A proper nacre layer should be at least 0.08-0.12 in (2-3 mm) thick, which takes approximately 18-24 months. Therefore, it is wise not to harvest too early.

“Black” pearls vary considerably in color.

Tahitian Black Pearls 1
Tahitian Black Pearls

Most pearls produced by Black-Lip pearl oysters will be dark gray or black with an iridescent quality. It is the iridescent colors of the pearl that increases its value. There should be undertones of blue, green, purple (eggplant) or silver. Predominantly blue-green colors with hints of other colors (the term “peacock” refers to having all colors present) are considered most valuable. Pearls are always examined and graded in natural sunlight so that the subtle colors can best be seen.

The color of the pearls grafted by a technician can tell you a lot about his or her skill. If a high percentage of the pearls are silver-white, yellow or orange, it may mean that the technician was not careful in selecting mantle tissue that produced the best nacre quality. Pearls of these colors have a much lower value than darker colors. However, even the best technicians will produce pearls with a wide variety of colors.

Pearl shapes are generally classified as round, semi-round, circlé, or baroque.

pearls shape - Miss Joaquim Pearls Wholesale - Whatsapp +6287865026222
pearls shape – Miss Joaquim Pearls Wholesale – Whatsapp +6287865026222

Round pearls are completely round on all sides, while semi-rounds may have slightly flattened or bulging surfaces. Round pearls will sell for the highest price and the number of round pearls produced by a technician is a sign of his or her skill. Baroque pearls are pearls with any shape other round and although not considered as high quality can still be valuable if of otherwise good quality. Circlés are the baroque pearls that have circular grooves running around the outside of the pearl.

The luster and orient of a pearl are classified by the way in which the surface of a pearl reflects light. A high quality pearl with good luster reflects light well, while a poor quality pearl is dull or chalky. The most lustrous pearls have a finish that is mirror-like. The orient refers to the way the light enters the semi-transparent nacre and is refracted outwards. This gives an appearance of depth to the pearl.

Pearls with thin nacre will usually be betrayed by poor luster and orient. The surface of a pearl should be smooth and without flaws. Pearls are often flawed with a variety of bumps, pits and spots that reduce its value. If there are only one or two small flaws that can be hidden when the pearl is made into jewelry, it still may be rated as a Grade A pearl, but more flaws will definitely reduce its grade.

The most important thing to understand about selling your pearls is that not all pearls can or will be sold. While a rating of “commercial” or “C+” is awarded to the lowest quality marketable pearl, often the majority of a farmer’s production cannot even meet this standard and thus cannot be sold. Therefore, since it takes only one mistake to ruin an otherwise perfect pearl, doing even the smallest tasks correctly is extremely important to the success of your business.

On average, the top 5% percent of pearls will earn 95% of a farmer’s income. Only 5-10% of pearls produced are considered high quality. This means that if you harvest 1,000 pearls, only 50-100 of those will fetch the highest prices. The rest may not sell for enough to produce a profit.

Indonesia south sea pearls wholesale - Miss Joaquim Pearls - whatsapp +6287865026222
Indonesia south sea pearls wholesale – Miss Joaquim Pearls – whatsapp +6287865026222

Pearl grading is a fine art, but obtaining a high price for your pearls depends on your knowledge of the basics. Do not depend on the pearl buyer to accurately grade your pearls, since this affects the price he will pay you. If possible, have an impartial, qualified person grade your pearls. You should also try to learn as much as possible about pearl grading and the ever-changing international market to ensure the accuracy of the grader.

You can also sell other pearl products such as mabe and various shell products. These might include jewelry made from polished shell, fishing lures, and other handicrafts that incorporate pieces of polished shell. Face cream made with scraps of nacre from pearl oyster shells can also be sold for a good price.

Article source: The Basic Methods of Pearl Farming, Author: A Layman’s ManualMaria Haws, Ph.D. (Director, Pearl Research and Training Program, Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resources Center, University of Hawaii at Hilo, Hilo, HI 96720 USA, Center for Tropical and Subtropical Aquaculture, Publication No. 127, March 2002)
south sea pearls wholesaleFor Questions and answer you can contact & chat with us on:

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We send your purchasing parcel via FedEx, we inform you the tracking number as soon as possible

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We send your purchasing parcel via FedEx, we inform you the tracking number as soon as possible
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Flat back pearls wholesale: Half-pearl (mabe) implantation

Flat back pearls wholesale: Half-pearl (mabe) implantation

flat back pearls wholesaleHalf-pearls, also called “mabe,” can be a good way to make money from pearl oysters. Mabe are dome-shaped pearls formed on the surface of the pearl oyster shell. Although the term half pearl” is also used to describe mabe, this may be confusing since the term “half-pearl” is also used to describe other types of pearls. Although not as valuable as a round pearl, it is easier to reliably produce mabe. If for some reason you cannot or do not wish to hire a grafting technician, you can implant half-pearl nuclei yourself. Even if you are producing round pearls, you can use defective or old pearl oysters that the grafting technician rejects to produce mabe. flat back pearls wholesale. (Source: flat back pearls wholesale)
flat back pearls wholesale

(Source: flat back pearls wholesale)

Half-pearl nuclei are made from plastic and are most commonly round, oval or teardrop-shaped. One side is flat and the other rounded. These range in size from 0.3 in (8 mm) to 0.6 in (15 mm) in diameter and cost $0.50-$1. The best size to implant is the 0.3–0.4 in (8-10 mm) size. Half-pearl nuclei made specifically for half-pearl production can be ordered and come in a variety of shapes: round, oval, teardrop or heart-shaped. However, just about any small plastic object with one flat side can be used. (Source: flat back pearls wholesale).

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(Source: flat back pearls wholesale)

Flat back pearls wholesale : Producing mabe
Carefully open the pearl oyster so you can see inside and select a good spot to glue the nucleus.
Open the pearl oysters by allowing the shell to open naturally; then insert a wedge of wood to keep it open. Otherwise open the shell using the flat-edge opening tool and speculum as you would for normal grafting (no more than 0.3 in or 8 mm or you risk injuring it). Place the pearl oyster in a clamp to hold it securely. (Source: flat back pearls wholesale)

mabe cross sectionFigure 18. Typical grafting tools. Left to right: Two sizes of speculum for opening shells; spatula and hook for positioning tissues; two knives for making incisions in the gonad prior to insertion of the nucleus; mantle tissue lifter; forceps; knife for trimming mantle tissue; scissors for cutting byssus; and scissors for trimming mantle tissue. The photograph on the right demonstrates the positioning of the open pearl oyster in the clamp relative to the rafting tissue. (photographs: Fareka, Farell).(Source: flat back pearls wholesale)

Look for areas on the inside of the shell where the nacre is lustrous and of the desired color. The half-pearl will have the same color as the area on the shell where it is glued. If it is placed near the colored area, which is close to the edge of the shell, it will have a dark, iridescent quality. If placed further inside, it will be white or silvery. It helps to have a lamp or flashlight to be able to see inside the shell. You can also use a small dental mirror to examine the inside of the shell for a spot with good nacre to glue the nucleus. (Source: flat back pearls wholesale)

Use only a small amount of glue to attach the nucleus to the selected spot. Dry the part of the shell where you want to place the plastic nuclei using a cotton swab or small sponge. Pick up the nucleus on the lifter (Figure 19-how to graft mabe) with the flat side up. Put a drop of polycyanoacry late glue (also known as Super Glue™) on the flat side of the nucleus. Press the nucleus firmly against the top shell and hold for 10 seconds. The nucleus should stick. Take care not to leave the pearl oyster open for more than a few minutes.(Source: flat back pearls wholesale)

Mabe Pearls
Mabe Pearls

Article source: The Basic Methods of Pearl Farming, Author: A Layman’s ManualMaria Haws, Ph.D. (Director, Pearl Research and Training Program, Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resources Center, University of Hawaii at Hilo, Hilo, HI 96720 USA, Center for Tropical and Subtropical Aquaculture, Publication No. 127, March 2002) (Source: flat back pearls wholesale)
south sea pearls wholesaleFor Questions and answer you can contact & chat with us on:

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abdurrachim pearl fedex
We send your purchasing parcel via FedEx, we inform you the tracking number as soon as possible

This is my name, my phone number and my address, as a sender (written by FedEx)
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Pearls Harvest

Pearls Harvest

golden_pearl_harvesting
Golden pearl harvesting
  • Harvest pearls when the nacre layer is 0.08-0.12 in (2-3 mm) thick.
  • A good quality black pearl has a nacre layer at least 0.08-0.12 in (2-3 mm) thick, which takes a minimum of 18 months in most areas.
  • Do not risk producing pearls with thin nacre by trying to harvest early. If you are not sure if your pearls have a thick enough layer of nacre to be harvested, harvest a few and have them drilled. Examination of the drilled hole with a magnifying glass or jeweler’s loupe will reveal whether the nacre is thick enough.
  • Pearls with thin nacre have poorer luster and buyers will soon discover that these pearls are of inferior quality when they are drilled because they crack around the drill holes. Selling poor quality pearls can ruin your reputation as a pearl farmer and make future sales more difficult.

The technician who grafted the pearl oysters will likely want to return for the harvest. In most cases, technicians will want to harvest the pearls they grafted, especially when working for a share of the harvest. This is advantageous for the farmer because the technician will be especially motivated to work carefully.

Supervise all workers and technicians during the harvest.
indonesia south sea pearls cultivation 3
Although most people are honest, it is not unusual for a pearl farmer to lose a high percentage of his harvest through theft. Some technicians may try and insist that the farmer not watch them harvest the pearls because of the supposed danger of revealing secret methods. This should not be allowed.
wholesale pearlsThe farmer has the right to supervise all phases of the harvest. Additionally, pearls can easily be dropped and lost by careless workers. Having you there will make workers more careful because they may be held accountable for their actions. After harvest, pearls should be stored in a secure place.

A second or third graft may be performed on some pearl oysters. Second grafts can be an important part of operating a profitable farm. A skilled technician can graft a pearl oyster a second time if the first pearl produced is a high-quality, round pearl. Second grafts are only performed on pearl oysters that produce good pearls because the price of the larger nucleus used in the second graft is high. The second pearl will be larger and has a higher probability that it will be of good quality. Conversely, a pearl oyster that produces a poor quality first pearl will most likely produce a poor quality second pearl.

Wash pearls after harvesting.

Harvesting Oyster
Harvesting Oyster

Pearls will have a thin mucus coating when harvested, so it is best to keep them in freshwater until they can be cleaned using a salt bath. Special tumblers can be purchased for this purpose or a cloth bag can be used. Add approximately twice as much rock salt to the tumbler or bag as the volume of the pearls to be cleaned. Then add just enough freshwater to make a slushy mixture. Tumble or gently shake the bag for about 5 minutes. Next, rinse in freshwater and dry on a soft cloth. The pearls will be much more lustrous after cleaning. This is all the processing necessary for black pearls. Do not risk your reputation as a producer by attempting other forms of processing designed to cover flaws or poor luster.

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An important part of grafting and harvesting is keeping thorough records. Keep records throughout the entire production process. Record the number of pearl oysters that were taken to be seeded, rejected, died and/or rejected the nucleus. The number of second or third grafts that were performed and how many pearls were harvested should also be recorded. Tracking the performance of individual technicians is also a good practice.

pearls
pearls chart

Article source: The Basic Methods of Pearl Farming, Author: A Layman’s ManualMaria Haws, Ph.D. (Director, Pearl Research and Training Program, Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resources Center, University of Hawaii at Hilo, Hilo, HI 96720 USA, Center for Tropical and Subtropical Aquaculture, Publication No. 127, March 2002)
south sea pearls wholesaleFor Questions and answer you can contact & chat with us on:

  • Phone : +6287865026222
  • Facebook Massager click below :
  •  facebook.com/mutiaralomboktourpearlwholesale
  • Twitter : @abdurrachim
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  • Email to: abdurrachim@gmail.com
  • Telegram id : mutiarapearl
  • LINE id : chatinmyline
  • wechat id: chatwechat

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We send your purchasing parcel via FedEx, we inform you the tracking number as soon as possible

This is my name, my phone number and my address, as a sender (written by FedEx)
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Pearls farming : Nucleus implantation (grafting)

Nucleus implantation (grafting)

Pearls Grafting
Pearls Grafting

Nucleus implantation, also called grafting or seeding, is the surgical implantation of a shell nucleus and tissue graft (a small piece of mantle tissue) into the pearl oyster, thus starting the development of a cultured pearl. Natural pearls occur when a foreign body, such as a boring worm or grain of sand, irritates the pearl oyster. Nacre is secreted around the foreign body by the mantle tissue to protect the pearl oyster’s tissues.

wholesale pearlsGrafting is a means of imitating this natural process so that a cultured pearl can be grown. Grafting is a surgical procedure that should only be done by a qualified seeding technician. Almost anyone can learn from a technician how to perform the grafting operation, but it requires years of practice and dedication to perfect this skill and produce high quality pearls.

Guidelines for obtaining good grafting services

  • The skill of the grafting technician affects pearl quality and farm operating costs.
  • Good technicians are in high demand and prefer to work with experienced, reliable farmers.
  • If a technician is confident of the skill of the farmer, he will work for a share of the harvest. Otherwise, a technician will demand a cash payment of $3-$4 for each pearl oyster he grafts.
  • In both cases, the farmer usually pays the airfare, lodging, food and expenses of a grafting technician while he works on the farm.
  • The farmer must negotiate the best deal he can, since the cost of hiring a technician is one of the major farm operating costs.
  • It is preferable to have the technician work for a share of the harvest, since this motivates the technician to return and also if the technician’s earnings depends on the harvest of good quality pearls, he or she will be much more motivated to graft carefully and give the farmer helpful advice.

Beware of technicians who graft too rapidly.

  • It is common practice for technicians working on a cash payment basis to simply graft as many pearl oysters as possible without regard for suitability of the pearl oyster to produce a good pearl.
  • Careful grafting takes time, therefore, if a technician grafts more than 300 pearl oysters in a regular 8-hour workday, it may be an indication that he is working too fast.
  • Traits to look for when hiring a technician are extensive experience, skill and a good reputation.
  • Since grafting services are expensive, be sure and select a qualified technician. It takes several years for a grafting technician to be able to reliably produce good quality pearls. \
  • The success of a technician is measured by several factors: mortalities after grafting, the number of pearl oysters that reject the nucleus and ultimately, the number of round Grade A pearls produced.
  • Always ask for letters of refer for both you (the farmer) and technician to sign.
pearls grafting
pearls grafting

Technicians can be good sources of technical advice.

  • Each seeding technician has his own methods and it is imperative that you follow his instructions
    during the grafting process to guarantee success.
  • Several months before the technician is scheduled to arrive, ask him for instructions on how to prepare the pearl oysters and farm for the grafting procedure.
  • Try and learn as much as possible from the visiting technician about how to operate a farm. Even the best technician cannot produce good pearls if farm management is poor before or after grafting.
  • While many technicians also buy pearls, they may not offer the best prices. Technicians will often make a farmer an offer to buy the pearls immediately after a harvest. In many cases, the price offered is below the market price, but you may feel pressured to accept the offer either to please the technician or because you do not feel confident that you can sell the pearls elsewhere.
  • Resist the temptation to sell the pearls immediately. You will usually be able to obtain a better price from wholesaler pearl buyers or jewelers.
  • If you want to sell to your technician, you should try to have the pearls graded and the price set by an impartial professional.

The grafting process

pearls grafting
pearls grafting
  • Preparation for grafting The ideal pearl oyster size for grafting is about 4.5-6 in (12-15 cm) in length, or about the size of a woman’s hand.
  • These animals will be 1½-2 years of age. This age is ideal because the pearl oysters are still growing quickly and will produce nacre at a more rapid speed.
  • The nacre produced by young pearl oysters also tends to have more luster than that produced by older animals. Older and larger pearl oysters can be grafted, but are less likely to produce high-quality pearls.
  • Pearl oysters gathered from the reef need special preparation for grafting.
  • Pearl oysters collected as spat are superior to adults collected from the reef for pearl production. The reasons for this are not completely understood; it may be that animals farmed from a very young age are simply more accustomed to the sometimes stressful conditions of a farm. Also, pearl oysters collected from the reef are likely to be older.
  • If you must use pearl oysters taken as adults from the reef, you should prepare these carefully for grafting. These animals should have been hung on lines or in baskets for at least 6 months before seeding begins.
  • Pearl oysters must be cleaned on a monthly basis before grafting; a final cleaning is done just before grafting. Cleaning keeps the pearl oysters healthy and in good condition. The cleaning done just before grafting should be a light and gentle cleaning so that the animals are not shocked. The technician may ask for you to perform pre-grafting conditioning.
  • Technicians have different methods of conditioning the pearl oysters, but it is common for the technician to ask the farmer to condition the pearl oysters about 6 weeks before grafting.
  • Conditioning is a means of inducing the pearl oysters to spawn, thus ridding the gonad of most of the egg or sperm, which can interfere with grafting. If grafting takes places just after the normal annual spawning, this may not be necessary.
  • Conditioning is done by raising the lines to the surface of the water for about 4 hours during the heat of the day. The increased temperature and reduction in water pressure makes the pearl oysters spawn. After spawning, they are returned to their usual depth. It is important that this is not done immediately before grafting since conditioning weakens the pearl oysters and they need time to recover.
  • A special farm platform or building where the technician can work is needed. Grafting is usually conducted on a covered platform built over the water. This platform must be sturdily built so that it does not shake while the technician is working. It should also be built in an area that is deep enough to hang chaplets of pearl oysters.
  • The water surrounding the platform must be calm and clear since sediment in the water can interfere with the quality of the seeding. The platform should also be spacious enough that workers can move around without disturbing the technician.
  • Technicians usually will request that a special table and chair be provided. Seeding can also be conducted on land, but this is not as convenient.

The grafting procedure

pearls grafting
pearls grafting
  • When the pearl oysters are brought to the platform for seeding, they are opened slightly with special tools. A wooden peg is then inserted to keep the pearl oyster open until the seeding technician works on it. Care should be taken not to leave the pearl oysters open for longer than a few minutes as this can kill it.
  • The seeding technician will look for a donor animal from which to take the mantle tissue graft. The mantle tissue of the donor animal determines the color and quality of the cultured pearl, so care should be taken to use only pearl oysters with the most beautiful nacre for this. The donor is then killed and the mantle tissue removed. This strip of mantle tissue is trimmed and cleaned until only a thin strip containing the nacre-producing epithelial cells remains.
  • The strip is then cut into tiny squares about 1/8 x 1/8 in (2 x 3 mm) long. These tiny pieces of mantle tissue will be inserted along with the nucleus into the tissues of the pearl oyster. The transplanted mantle “graft” will grow, covering the nucleus with a tough tissue called the “pearl sac.” The inner lining of the pearl sac contains the epithelial cells, which continue secreting nacre onto the nucleus. As the layers of nacre accumulate, a pearl is formed (Figure17).
  • The seeding technician will then take the pearl oysters selected for grafting and open them slightly wider. These are placed in a special clamp. After examination, some of these will be rejected as too old, too small or simply unsuitable for seeding. In most cases, the size and shape of the gonad will determine whether the pearl oyster is grafted or not. This is based on the judgment of the grafting technician and is learned after years of practice.
  • The technician makes a small cut in the gonad of the pearl oyster. The mantle graft is inserted into the gonad first, followed by the nucleus. The size of the nucleus used depends on the size of the pearl oyster and the condition of the gonad. Generally nuclei range in size from 0.3 in (7 mm) to 1.56 in (14 mm), with the smaller sizes being most commonly used the first time an animal is grafted. A small piece of the donor mantle tissue is inserted last. The pearl oyster is then allowed to close, placed on a chaplet or in a tray and returned to the water. Figure 17.
  • Nacre is formed by the epithelial cells of the mantle tissue. The upper diagram shows a natural irritant or a plastic mabe form being covered progressively with layers of nacre deposited by these cells. In the case of a cultured pearl, this process is imitated. The transplanted piece of mantle tissue contains the nacre-producing epithelial cells. The small piece of tissue grows around the nucleus with the epithelial cells forming the inner layer of the pearl sac (from Wada 1973).

Post-grafting care

pearls cultivation
pearls cultivation
  • The first 30 days after grafting are a critical period during which the pearl sac forms. The first 30-40 days after grafting are critical because that is when most deaths or nucleus rejections occur.
  • During the recuperation period after grafting, the piece of mantle tissue that was implanted along with the nucleus will slowly grow around the nucleus creating the “pearl sac.” Layers of nacre are slowly secreted around the nucleus by cells contained within the pearl sac.
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  • It usually takes about 1½-2 years to form a pearl with sufficiently thick nacre 0.8-0.12 in or (2-3 mm) to harvest.
  • To monitor the grafted pearl oysters, use catch bags. It is common to enclose the newly seeded pearl oyster in a fine-meshed bag called a “catch bag”. Using the catch bag allows you to see if the nucleus is rejected. Catch bags can be used with either chaplets or panels.
  • Some technicians may object to using catch bags, you can and should insist on this, as it is the only way to determine how well the technician is doing. Be sure to include this condition in the contract with the technician.
  • The catch bags should not be left on for longer than 40 days after grafting because it may interfere with the pearl oysters’ ability to feed. The pearl oysters should be allowed to rest in very calm waters for about 40 days after grafting.
  • You may need to have a special line for this if your other farm lines are in an area that experiences swift currents. As always, handle the grafted animals gently when moving them to the line and do not expose them to heat or dryness.
  • After 40 days, the pearl oysters can be removed from the catch bags and inspected. Some pearl oysters will die and others will reject the nucleus during the first 40 days. The pearl oysters can be cleaned for the first time after grafting at this point.
  • Remove the pearl oysters from the catch bags and carefully inspect the bag for a rejected nucleus. Keeping a record of how many died and how many rejected the nucleus helps you evaluate the performance of the technician.
  • Return the pearl oysters that have kept the nucleus to the farm lines. It may be helpful to make a map of your farm or to place plastic tags on the chaplets to help you remember which pearl oysters are grafted. Separate the pearl oysters that have rejected the nucleus and keep these to produce keshi pearls.
  • Even though the nucleus is rejected, some of the mantle tissue may remain inside the gonad. The pieces of tissue often form baroque pearls without a nucleus called “keshi.” Farmers usually leave these pearl oysters in the water for 2 years before harvesting. Keshis can be large and attractive and may produce a high proportion of your farm’s revenue.
Harvesting Oyster
Harvesting Oyster

Article source: The Basic Methods of Pearl Farming, Author: A Layman’s ManualMaria Haws, Ph.D. (Director, Pearl Research and Training Program, Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resources Center, University of Hawaii at Hilo, Hilo, HI 96720 USA, Center for Tropical and Subtropical Aquaculture, Publication No. 127, March 2002)
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