I opened one of my hives today, one that has been going gangbusters this year. It started as a package in late may and I have a third deep on it already. I opened it up today and was surprised to see that they weren't building new comb in the new deep. I opened up the second deep and it was full of honey on the outside. A few frames in I noticed there were queen cells. One was uncapped with a worker sticking her head in. I flipped the frame over and noticed a few more. All were surrounded by capped worker brood and in the middles of the frame. All in all I noticed a dozen or so queen cells, some looked capped and some not. So I am wondering is it possible I killed the queen last time I was in the hive? the queen cells weren't there last time I looked. Could they be getting ready to swarm this late in the year in MI? I am new beek but have tried very hard to keep plenty of room for brood nest and there are several frames with open cells and capped brood still. SO, my question really is; if they are superceding or replacing an inadvertantly killed queen, when the first one to hatch and mate takes over will the workers kill off the other queens or will they skeedaddle with a swarm?
Thanks much for your input.