The abdomen is not what stops a queen from getting thru an excuder, it's the thorax.Can a laying worker get through a queen excluder? Is her abdomen overdeveloped like a queen?
I know thats the common belief but I also know for a fact (and I have visually witnessed it more than once) that an active young (not newly hatched) virgin can and will squeeze through an excluder.The abdomen is not what stops a queen from getting thru an excuder, it's the thorax.
Besides, a laying worker colony wont have just one worker laying eggs, there will be a bunch of them.
Yes, I've had a few of those mated queen contortionists as well. I run queen right cell builders and inevitably screw up a time or two a year and have virgins hatch above the excluder. My solution has always been to do a quick check to find her but often the box is just so heavily populated and if I'm uncertain whether there is one or perhaps more, I end up shaking or brushing each frame off and smoking them down through the excluder. Usually works like a charm but two times now I have seen the virgin disappear through the excluder just as I was reaching down to grab her. I've learned not to "push" them too much with smoke and just let them kind of find the way down on their own and almost always find her that way. So, yes, it can happen, it most definitely can happen particularly when she's trying to escape.I once had a queen that could squeeze through the excluder at will, had me confused what was going on in the hive, until i saw her do it.
But that was the only time, ever.
I've had virgins that hatched above an excluder, and that was it for them, they never got to mate.