Greetings. I am a wannabe beekeeper. I am building my first two hives right now, and I've reserved two 3# packages of bees to install in April. I have a question about the proper technique for queen introduction when installing a package. I've been doing my reading and watching instructional videos on line, and it seems to me that people recommend several variations on how to introduce a queen, which would logically result in a different length of time for the queen to get released: 1. When you place the queen cage in the hive, immediately remove the wooden cover over the candy end and pierce through the candy with a sharp object, to make it easier for the bees to chew through the candy. 2. Same method without the sharp object - don't make a hole in the candy. Come back a week later, and if the queen didn't get released, pierce the candy to help the bees out. 3. (This one is recommended by Kim Flottum, who, I've noticed, has a generally low opinion of queens on the market in the US): when you install the queen cage, don't remove the wood cover over the candy plug. Leave the hive alone for a week, then come back and see how the worker bees are behaving around the queen cage. Are they mobbing it and trying to bite the wires, or are they climbing up and over it and treating it as something they've grown used to? If they seem comfortable with the queen cage, then remove the wood cover of the candy end, and let the bees chew through the candy. (I suppose a variation on this method would be to just pull out the candy plug if the bees are comfortable with the queen). Obviously, I don't want the queen released too soon and get killed. However, I also feel like it wouldn't be good to linger too much with the queen introduction - the new colony needs to have an egg-laying queen ASAP. So, I would like to ask the people on this forum, who have probably done this a hundred times, what method works best for you? A somewhat related question: obviously the queen and the attendants in the cage have the candy plug for food, so they will not run out of food. But if they don't get out of their cage, will they run out of water after a while? I know bees get their water from nectar or the syrup you feed them, but the queen and attendants in the cage have nothing but the piece of candy, and the worker bees outside the cage aren't inclined to feed them syrup, I imagine. Thank you in advance for your help.