Missing eggs – advice requested
So my most recent inspection found no eggs. We are in central Maryland. The observations:
- There was uncapped larva, on the smaller side.
- First-year hive, 1yo queen. Three deep brood & two medium supers.
- I had applied HopGuard four weeks ago and was removing the strips.
- There were bees that look like they had exploded out the back with polleny guts.
- I saw a hive beetle, but not in numbers bigger than I've observed in healthy hives.
- No feeding since the last inspection.
I assume that I didn't squish her four weeks ago. It's possible the HopGuard stayed in too long, but I can't find any evidence that it's a problem, just ineffective. There were only a couple of the 'exploded' bees.
There were no queen cells, though I stopped my inspection before getting to the last few frames – I felt that leaving a few frames undisturbed might help them if they're trying to rear a new queen.
I've read that this time of year, laying can slow. Assuming that it's time to worry, should I let them try to rear a new queen, or is it too late for that? Should I just get a new queen ASAP – or is it too late for that?