I just split one of my strong hives by moving frames of eggs and brood to a new hive and will let the bees make a new queen. When I was working on the old source hives, I accidentally damaged swarm cells as I pulled out the frames. I could see in one of them that it was still was not too far from the larvae stages, i.e. did not look at all like a bee yet.
I am wondering how if the old queen may have already swarmed because much of the honey that was in there two weeks ago is gone. What is the typical time from when the old queen swarms and the new queen emerges? Based upon the appearance of the damaged swarm cell, it was not going to be a queen for over a week or more. I have also heard that even if the swarm cells are destroyed, the old queen may still swarm if it is fairly close to the time the new queens would have emerged. I don't want to end up with a queenless hive since I moved the frame with the eggs to the new hive. Thanks, Jim