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I just went thru one of my hives and found zero brood. I saw a few queen cells but nothing with eggs in them and no sign of a hatched queen cell. What are the odds that the queen made it most of the way thru winter and then died allowing the hive to survive? Seems like an odd situation. The only other thing I could think of is that the queen superseded and has not mated yet and started laying and or a swarm. Swarm seems unlikely because we just started any type of flow and until the last week or so we've still been getting pretty cool.

Just wondering if anyone might have any insight or has seen something like this before.

If I don't see brood in a week I will likely just get a queen.

~Matt
 

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They should have had eggs to make a new queen in Jan for spring build up. You might have a virgin.
It takes 24 days to develop a drone laying worker after being queenless/broodless.

Give them a frame of eggs and see what they do with it.
 

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>If I don't see brood in a week I will likely just get a queen.

If it was an overwintered hive and there are no eggs or brood at this point in IL I wouldn't wait a week. If you can get someone to give you a frame of open brood, I'd put that in now, and start finding a queen for sale.
 

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If he had a virgin from January time frame, wouldnt it become a drone laying queen by now?
Yes it would by now or if there is no queen they would have developed a drone laying worker, so there should have been a queen in the last 24 days. I don't think he could have gone all winter without a queen there would be no bees left by now.

If you can get someone to give you a frame of open brood, I'd put that in now, and start finding a queen for sale.
If he puts a frame of brood in and they are queenless won't they immediately make a queen cell? And kill an introduced queen after that point?
 

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>If he puts a frame of brood in and they are queenless won't they immediately make a queen cell? And kill an introduced queen after that point?

They likely have laying workers by now. The open brood will start to suppress them. If they start queen cells, I'd stop looking for a queen, but I expect that they won't start a queen cell. I expect it to take three times a week apart to set the laying workers back enough for them to start a queen cell.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
>If I don't see brood in a week I will likely just get a queen.

If it was an overwintered hive and there are no eggs or brood at this point in IL I wouldn't wait a week. If you can get someone to give you a frame of open brood, I'd put that in now, and start finding a queen for sale.
I can snag brood from other hives but am hesitant to as this was the last hive I looked at and had just split all my other hives, probably a bad move but wanted to try and get back some of my winter losses. Should be able to get a queen this next weekend.

Thanks all. Just seemed like an unusual situation as I knew they could not have made it thru the winter queenless and then, poof, she's gone.

~Matt
 
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