These were swarm cells attached to the bottom of the frames. My mentor told me to destroy them to keep the bees from swarming. I don't believe they have swarmed yet because there seemed to be a lot of bees in the hives. I'm starting to feel a little bad about scraping these queen cells off. I live in an AHB area though and thought that was what I was supposed to do.
Me thinks you were destroying DRONE cell. The bees build those Drone cell in the spaces between the upper and lower frames. It's just what they do. While you are scraping the broken cells of look closely and you will see the V mites babies within, some 3 4 5 in a cell.
For your study assignment do a veeeeery brief search on how to provide drone cell space and also V.mite control. Essentially you can insert a drone cell frame, made for the purpose or do as Finsky does cut one of your deep frames to about 1/3 it's size and let the bees draw out drone comb in the empty space below. Active colonies build lotsa drone cells everywhere in the brood area. That's really rudementry knowledge though.
As far as your agressive bees
It seems that they do become more protective as they store more honey/food. Are these bees ferals
In my experience, short, I have experienced such aggression with feral hives. I re-queened two of them and plan to re-queen two more after the honey flow, this coming summer or no later than when I can still obtain sweet queens.
I have taken a bath just prior to suiting up to go into those mean hives. I have applied liberal amounts of smoke and I found that smoking myself to the choking point helps a little. But once the attacks are on smoking does little to dissuade the bees. I have sprayed sugar water on the bees and around the boxes, inside and out and that might help a little. I have found that if you are well suited and protected just bear with it and after awhile the bees become confused and the attacks more or less stop. However the bees will stink your clothing and of course that banana smell is released attracting even more stinging suicidal attacks. The experience can be intimidating no doubt but can be overcome, IF YOU AREN"T ACTULLY being stung in your body. h
However if you are actually being stung, then it's all about your ability too FEEL YOUR PAIN
You know kinda like Bill and his pain feelin' ability.
I have read about the AHB's, as everyone has no doubt, but from dealing with agressive feral hives as I have done, then dealing with AHB's will not be a pleasent experience, at all.