Repeated queen fertilization
So what people think OR maybe even know some facts about...
.... repeated queen fertilization or re-fertilization.
Here is a quote from a PDF book (auto-translated and edited slightly by me; will not state the author/book name for my own reasons).
Since the common, industrialized practices altered the natural life cycle of the bee, what do we really know?
Such longevity is maintained when the queen leaves with a swarm. During the flight, she manages to mate with several dozen drones and thereby "rejuvenates".
I watched a couple of such cases when the first swarm came out with a marked queen. I knew that the queen was old and laid in the former family with gaps. What was my first surprise, when the old marked queen covered for 3 days 3 frames with an even continuous sowing and later worked for a “new” place for another two or three years before leaving the swarm forever.
Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.