Bjorn,re: "You inspector does not know what he is talking about"
Actually, only thing he said is he didn't know what it was all about . . . so don't be too judgmental from afar - he is a very knowledgeable beekeeper and inspector and I have interacted with him many times. And he certainly didn't think, say, or even intimate that the workers were "raised in the queen cell" as you mention. It was clear that they were not raised in there, but got trapped in there for some reason (they were dead, head first
in cell, but fully developed workers). As I mentioned, he was perplexed by the phenomenon and stated that he didn't know why it happened this time or previously when he had seen it.
You may well have described how this scenario occurred, although I looked at that capped cell closely and I could not detect any precision round hole or any typical emerged looking exit that had been sealed over. But, of course, I wasn't looking for that at the time. In fact, the end was rather domed, like that of an earlier queen cell. I am not saying that this did not happen, and maybe it well did - as you say, many factors could have sealed those workers in. Doesn't fully explain "why", and if you have seen it many times, then maybe there is a "why" or an explanation to it all. Or maybe it is accidental when it does occur - you would almost think that the worker could chew through the side of the cell to get out - maybe they are in too cramped a situation to do so. Interesting in any case.
How often do you see more than one worker stuck in the queen cell? Thinking of my observation hive, I don't think I have seen 2 workers head first in a cell working on it (but I have only had it this one season). I have seen very long honey cells with a worker waaaay down to the end - say 2.5 body lengths of a cell (claustrophobia must not be in a bees genetic makeup
I will soon get to see the bees deconstructing or working around some empty queen cells in my observation hive (3-4 ready to hatch about this Friday). Maybe I will get to see some prankster workers zip over and seal one of their buddies in the left over queen cell as a practical joke . .
. . . and then maybe they have a short attention span and forget to let their buddy out