Pearl harvesting has a long history tropical waters and pearls have been recognized as jewellery since ancient times. Although there are more than 70 different types of oysters which can produce pearls, it is only the black-lipped oyster, Pinctada Margaritifera, which produces the black pearl. Although the oyster is typically found around islands in the Pacific Ocean, it is also present in other tropical parts of the world such as the Seychelles.
In order to create a cultured pearl we place a nucleus inside the gonad of an adult oyster. At the same time, we insert a fragment of the epithelium from a donor oyster which must be in contact with the nucleus. The epithelium then encapsulates the nucleus and thus form a "pearl sack". The pearl sack will then continuesly secrete nacre, depositing it in concentric layers, until the pearl is harvested. Grafting is geniune surgery and requires manual skill, good judgment and knowledge of oyster anatomy.
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