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I have one hive for a year and a half. This spring the colony didn't look good, so I decided to buy a new queen. The vendor asked me to kill the old queen before I introduce the new one. I looked and looked for a queen and couldn’t find one. I opened the hive 4 times in a week (cold week). No queen. The last time I found a few queen cells. He sent a professional to inspect the hive. This guy confirmed that the colony was queen-less and failing, and that these were queen cells indeed.

I should have started from scratch, but I like doing things the hard way, you learn more.

I got a swarm, that I housed in a separate box adjacent to the failing hive. Guess what, they absconded and invaded the queen-less hive. Not sure what was the fate of the swarm queen, because 5-6 new capped queen cells appeared on other frames.

Yesterday I opened the hive. The old queen cells were empty (hatched and gone mating, or killed??). The new queen cells are still capped and bees are fussing around.

Today is day 16 from the alleged first queen cells and day 12 of the new queen cells. Infront of the hive I found 3 mutilated pupae (never seen anything like this before). Do these look like queen pupae?

Any thoughts? What should I look for?
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Today is day 16 after the swarm adoption. All queen cells are destroyed.
The good news is that I saw a queen waggling amongst fanning bees. Suppose will have to wait for a week to see if she has mated and if she is laying.
Weather is very rainy and windy.
There is hardly any brood. All capped brood from the original colony has hatched. It could be a touch and go if the queen doesn't start laying asap.
I was less anxious when I had kids, because I had my instincts to guide me. Now I have to trust the bees' instincts.
 
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