Those cells were left setting in a cooler in my garage. It's been awhile so I don't remember exact figures. But it would have been mid 60's to mid 70's, considerably cooler than a broodnest or incubator.
I've monitored attrition rates. Like everything bee wise, the rates vary between bees and seasons. But, through time, the normal losses fall into some broad ranges:
- grafting to sealing. 3 to 15%
- sealing to hatching. less than 1%
- hatching to laying. 10 to 18%
My queens weren't shipped and introduced, so I don't have any figures for that. But I suspect acceptance losses would be in that 15 to 18% range.
If so, sealing to hatching losses could be traded off for shipping/introduction losses, if the open cells are as robust as my small tests indicate, and a beekeeper is buying them through the mail.
If a beekeeper is producing them for himself, it's just so much easier and cheaper to produce 2 day old cells and use them to requeen a hive than it is introducing mated queens. To reduce risk, a beekeeper could insert 2 open cells instead of just one and still be way ahead.
Jim, what do you think?
Regards - Dennis