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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My friends have some property and agreed to let another friend put beehives in their orchard . One was a captured swarm one was a fledgling hive . Anyway they left town for the weekend , came back and they are both gone!? I looked at the hives- two eight frame deeps, one had nothing at all , no comb just yellow specks. The other had comb and a hand full of bees, I don't have protective gear so I was nervous to pull the frame that had bees on it!? Can these bees be saved if they are making a queen ? Would they be able to make a queen? The person who brought them over obviously doesn't know how to keep them and I only have read and researched in hopes of getting involved someday. They were not feed at all can we help them? She did buy really expensive hives though lol!
 

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"Can these bees be saved if they are making a queen ? Would they be able to make a queen?"
Probably not in your location with only a handful of bees and no other hives from which to pull other bees and brood (eggs or young bee larvae) to combine with them. You can check for a queen cell or just leave them alone and see what happens. The friend with the hives' options include buying bees or catching another swarm. If they do that, you may suggest that they post more information about the hive and location or get advice from others about setting up and situating the hives. The friend with the orchard's option include doing nothing or letting someone else put bees in the orchard. Depending on your situation, your options include going ahead and buying a couple of hives and bees and start beekeeping. I hope you each have success.
 

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> Can these bees be saved if they are making a queen ?

The odds are the answer is no. It is possible to make a new queen, but they must start with worker eggs/young larva, and there must be enough remaining bees to properly feed and care for/warm the cells. It seems unlikely from your description that both of those conditions exist.


 

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if the orchard is in operation it is not a good place to set up beehives. yes bees are needed at pollination time for a couple of weeks. the rest of the year orchards use a lot of insecticides. this is not a good situation for bees.
 

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If you saw a lot of dead bees lying about, then insecticide would be the most likely culprit. In this case, it's simply possible that the bees decided that a nearby tree was a more-suitable home. Maybe the queen wasn't there and so they followed her. It's all guesswork at this point. Clean-up the hives with soap and water, let them dry thoroughly, and try again. You can lead the horse to water, but you can't make him drink.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If you saw a lot of dead bees lying about, then insecticide would be the most likely culprit. In this case, it's simply possible that the bees decided that a nearby tree was a more-suitable home. Maybe the queen wasn't there and so they followed her. It's all guesswork at this point. Clean-up the hives with soap and water, let them dry thoroughly, and try again. You can lead the horse to water, but you can't make him drink.
The orchard is organic so no pesticide these people are fussy hippie kind. I'll check on bees in our area but think it's too late, investigate and plan for next year . Thanks for your replies and just for me, if they would have feed them would it have improved their chances? The hives were in full sun dry and somewhat protected. Thanks all
 
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