Our hive isn't doing so well this year. We're located in Montana. We lost our queen and last saw eggs June 5. They made lots of queen cups and we thought they were getting ready to swarm because the hive was actually really bursting at the seams and doing great but when we no longer saw any eggs we feared the worst. On June 22 we saw the first hatched queen cell. We then spotted the virgin queen twice in the ten days after that but the weather has been awful with lots of windy afternoons and thunderstorms. By July 8 all the remaining brood had hatched and the bees had made room for a brood nest in the middle of the box by moving out nectar but it's now been five more days (July 13) and there are still merely empty cells and no sign of any eggs. We are fearing the absolute worst now which is that our virgin queen also passed during her mating flights.
We are planning to purchase a queen from our local bee company but they have been out of stock this entire month and won't have another queen come in until July 20. I grab a bar of eggs and young brood from a friend but I am worried that'll decrease the chances the hive will accept the new queen we plan on introducing next week. On the other hand, waiting a week doing nothing feels like the wrong thing to do as well. The bees are definitely acting pretty frantic and I feel awful for them. Even though their numbers are still incredibly high they clearly know they are in a pickle.
Thanks for everybody's input!