This past weekend I inspected one of my hives to verify the queen I installed on May 4 had been released from her cage. I removed about eight queen cells before adding the queen cage. It had been four days and now the cage was empty. I searched all of the frames and could not locate her or any new eggs in the already drawn comb. Note that this is a three pound package that I installed on April 6 and I believe the queen failed originally since I could not locate her or any eggs upon my third inspection April 30. There were eggs and brood there on my second inspection on April 16. Since this is my second queen for this hive this season I removed most of the frames and set them aside so I had plenty of room to work. I am using a solid bottom board, a slatted rack (w/ slats parallel to frames), two deep brood boxes and a top feeder. I did notice a "ball" of bees down inside of the slatted rack. could the new queen have been inside of that ball of bees?
I guess the proof will be when I make my third inspection on or about May 18?