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The guild will be ordering packages for guild members this year. As in the past, James is very generously coordinating the order and picking up the bees for us. James’ information on package orders follows:

Package bees are available in late April or early May, and are supplied by BZ Bee Pollination. Actual delivery date is weather-dependent. They are three pound package bees with either Carniolian or Italian queens mated in the beautiful Capay Valley and Lake  Berryessa areas. The cost for 2015 is $85 each, which is relatively inexpensive considering you can pick them up in Santa Cruz. Interested parties should feel free to contact me with questions.  Orders need to be in April 1 and have a very legible phone order with the check. James will call folks a week or so ahead of the pickup day. Package bees are a reliable way to get introduced to beekeeping, I usually think of them as an ant farm for big kids!

James Cook
507 Fair Ave
415 613 6975

Call James with you order or see him at a meeting!


  1. James posted to our Yahoo! site regarding the status of packages this year, but I thought I’d copy his message here, as well. Tough times for our supplier…

    “Hello everyone!
    Beekeeping is a difficult task, even for the “professionals”. The supplier for package bees I have been working with ( the largest beekeeper in no. California 25000+ hives) the last 5 years has had major losses since I spoke with him late 2015. He was distraught to say the least when I spoke with him last week and not able to guarantee us bees this spring. Total bummer. He mentioned maybe a few weeks later and a significantly higher price but then said he had to fill 9000 dead outs first so….
    My apologies to the guild and everyone who has come to depend on this source of bees. I’m waiting to hear back from him and maybe he will be feeling more confident after almonds but I can’t make any promises at this point. I will post any news I get.
    The internet is full of expensive and far away package bees. Bulk purchasing seems harder to secure than small orders at this point. I have called around and been rejected trying to secure a large order for our community. It has been a pleasure to deliver quality bees at a excellent price in the past and I am sad to pass along this update. The true value of bees is becoming more clear ever year. I hope we as a community can become independent through the guild.. Making quality queens, splitting hives, sharing queen cells etc. perhaps the initial reason my father started the guild in the first place.
    My apologies again for the downer news, I will post when I hear back but if you are desperate for bees this spring then it might be wise to make alternate arrangements.
    James Cook”