This Hive seems half-empty! Maybe the game here is that its inhabitants are disguised.
Are we spelling out the locations of the bug tokens well enough? If you're right, you'll know the best you can do is eight.
Patience, young grasshopper... You want to find the fastest way to end this game of Hive. Block black from introducing any new pieces first, so you're on equal footing. And leave the beetle's second move (the only unforced one) till last, unless you want to anagram your answer.