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Installed two 3 pound packages, one each into two hives. My first hives.

1 week later, 1 queen was laying in hive 1, queen in hive 2 was still in her cage. I uncorked the trapped queen.

1.5 weeks after releasing trapped queen I checked both hives again. Hive 1 appeared to have good brood development. I could see pollen and "honey" which I think is being made from the sugar water I'm feeding. Hive 2 I could not see any eggs, nor any brood other than a few elongated cells, deeper than those surrounding, that had some larvae. These elongated cells are sporatically placed. Hive 2 did have pollen and "honey" cells, too. I found both queens alive. Hive 1 activity seems well ordered. Hive 2 activity seems less orderly (almost as if they aren't working together as a team . . . at least not as well as hive 1).

Any ideas what is going on? I know I need brood in hive 2 at this stage, but I'm uncertain what to do since I do find the queen is alive. My understanding is the bee population will be at its low at around 3 weeks following package installation i.e., right about now. Help?

Thank you.
 

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As a newbie myself, my take on your situation is that the hives are just different, and it's too early to say that you have any issues. If hive 2 has larvae, then you have a laying queen there. Since she's only been out of the cage for a week, I wouldn't expect any capped brood yet.

Your hive 1 has a one-week head start on #2, and at this point in the season that's significant. I wouldn't worry too much about #2 at this point.
 

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The elongated cells could be either drones, or supercedure cells. With them being sporatically placed and with the queen's performance, I would say they are supercedure cells. But, without seeing them, it is only a guess.
Either way, I would call the supplier on the package and have a new queen sent. The queen is not perfroming as she should be. After being released 10 days there should be varing stages of brood visible.
 
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