How Long Do Bees Live?

Mathias Erhart/CC-BY-SA 2.0

The average lifespan of a bee depends upon the hive’s activity when she is born, and is 40 days during the active season and five months if born the season before. Queen bees live an average of three years, and drones live until they mate or for 90 days.

A newborn worker bee begins to clean immediately. Her first two days of life include cleaning cells and keeping the hive warm, as bee hives are kept at a constant 93 degrees Fahrenheit. Female worker bees remove the bodies of dead drones from the hive before they take their first pollen gathering flight, usually 22 days after birth.