When baby oysters are grown to 7-9 cm in size, they may be inserted for purpose of pearl cultivation. Insertion usually takes place from March to June and from September to November each year. Ten days before insertion, baby oysters should be raised away from mud in order to increase the thickness and tenacity of their mantle. Then clean the oyster body, select those with a swelling body, rounder in the front- edge as well as fast-growing for the insertion process, while the remaining ones may be used for making into sliced oysters.
Freshwater pearls are usually cultivated in waters over one metre deep, mainly on sand or sandy land. The depth below water surface varies according to change in climate. Generally speaking, it is about 35 cm below water surface in winter time and 20 cm in spring and autumn times.

    Pearl Harvesting 
    Pearls are usually harvested during yearend or beginning of a year, from November to around February. Take pearl oysters out from the waters, cut with a shell opener through the oyster’s belly edge into the oyster body to break the shell-closing muscle. When the soft-body is revealed, use forceps or a knife to carefully take out pearls from the pearl-nursery bag.

    Pearl selection is divided into two steps. The first step is to group them according to their diameters. The second step is to group them according to quality, blemishes and color.
    Straightness and neatness of holes drilled in pearls are among the criterion in rating the craftsmanship of pearls processed. Pearls are wholly or half drilled according to their characteristics and the requirements of making them into certain category of jewellery.
    Polishing is the last step in the pearl enhancing process. This is decisive in the cleanness and lustre of pearls.


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