I inadvertently took a half decent photo of royal jelly during my hive inspections yesterday. Click the photo for a close up view that shows the larvae floating in the royal jelly.
Royal jelly is a white, gooey secretion that’s fed to all honey bee larvae for their first three days. Larvae intended to become queens are given a gigantic dose of royal jelly that more or less keeps them going for the duration of their development.
Here’s another shot from the same hive that shows some larvae after they’ve fattened up on all their royal jelly.
And here’s a frame of capped brood from a newly-mated queen.
I might as well cover all the bases while I’m at it. Here are some teenie tiny larvae probably only minutes old with no royal jelly added to the brood cells yet. We’re essentially looking at eggs here.