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Today I went into my hive to determine its strength as I figured I would try to combine it with one of my Uncles hives. A bit of history, my hive came out of the winter queenless , so I did everything wrong as newbees tend to do. Then I posted here for knowledge, which I got.. but still today I am stumped once again. Looking thru the hive I see lots of honey and some pollen. Spotty capped and uncapped Brood which all looks like drone brood to me as it is raised above the comb. But just as I thought I had seen enough to continue on with my plan I saw what looked like a queen. It was long and slender but with no bands on the abdomen kinda translucent looking. I tried to get a picture but that resulted in getting frustrated and stung multiple times. Other strange things were what looked like 2 swarm cells on the bottom of a frame and 1 supersede cell mid frame. Anyone tell me what is going on here?

Anyway I'm lost and frustrated.

I'm located in Central West Virginia and these Bees were originally from Italian stock.

TIA
jb
 

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Queen's come in all shapes and colors (stiped, black, amber, red, etc). Sometimes a virgin queen will look almost whitish or pale. Same as Eric, did the queen cells have eggs/larvae/capped? If they are elongated queen cells (inch or so), but empty, is the hole on the lower tip or the side of the cell?

Don't get discouraged or too frustrated - good chance to learn!
 

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Are there empty cells for her to lay? You may be honey bound. How many bees and what size box? Space may be too big, if so put her in a nuc wih 1 frame of honey/pollen and a couple of empty frames so she has many open cells and the house bees less area to protect. Have you treated for mites? Maybe a bad/old queen. The swarm cells may tell you she needs room to lay; the supercedure may tell you the Q needs replacing.
 

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Are the cells occupied or empty? This time of year, drones are going to be produced so seeing drone brood is not a surprise.
The cells on the bottom were occupied but uncapped. The mid frame cell looks strange, not the peanut looking queen cell, but just an elongated smooth cell.
 

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Any chance this is just a drone-laying queen? Maybe they are attempting to coax eggs out of her to supersede, but she just keeps laying blanks? JbsBee, please don't take this as advice. Just throwing out a possibility. I am not quite sure what you have going on there.
 

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Sounds like there is a virgin queen recently emerged running around in there. In 5 days or so, if the weather is good, she will do her mating flight, then 4 or so days after that she will start to lay. Might as well wait and see!
 

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Sounds like there is a virgin queen recently emerged running around in there. In 5 days or so, if the weather is good, she will do her mating flight, then 4 or so days after that she will start to lay. Might as well wait and see![/QUOTE

That might be what I was seeing, she looked long like a queen but very slim. They must gain some bulk after mating...?
 

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Update.
After finding a queen in what I thought was a laying worker hive I left it untouched for 2 weeks. After the 2 weeks I opened up the hive for inspection. As I proceeded thru the frames it looked pretty much as it was the last time I looked. Although I found no eggs I did see the queen on the sixth frame I inspected. She was scurrying about without an entourage with an egg protruding from her abdomen, which I thought was odd. As she crossed the frame the egg fell out of her and into an empty cell. As she disappeared to the other side of the frame I looked into the cell and there laid the egg. I am new to bee keeping but what I witnessed seemed to be weird......and not in a good way.
 

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If the population is still good, get a new mated queen ASAP. If it is a puny population, snuff the queen and combine with another hive.
 

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Sounds like you have a drone layer, without pics hard to be sure. if you are not seeing capped worker brood all drone and seeing the small queen, not good. As Eric said if good population replace her. Make sure it is a queen when you find her again and not seeing multiple eggs in cells, laying worker and they will kill the new queen most of the time.
 
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