Today I figured enough time had elapsed to go into the hive and see how the new queen introduction had gone. Part of me was prepared to find no sign of a queen and only a handful of bees, but happily enough I saw some scattered capped brood amongst the cells that had been requisitioned for honey storage when brood rearing stopped several weeks ago. On the third frame I looked at I thought I saw a flash of paint and, sure enough, there was the new queen just coming out of a cell where she had finishing laying an egg. In addition, I noticed that the workers seemed to be emptying out the contents of other brood cells which they had instead used for honey storage during the broodless storage.
After weeks of uncertainty, I now hold better hopes for my colony’s future. A queen is clearly established, the main heat of summer should be tapering off, and there are what appear to be flower buds forming on some of the hardier shrubs.