BeeBuyBack

Ensure Bee Health

Overview

Raise Mason Bees for the Future of Food

BEE BUY BACK

BeeBuyBack is Crown Bees' core program that empowers you, the backyard gardener, to raise mason bees with the goal of helping farmers to grow more food.

We work hard to encourage the use of solitary bees in orchards, community farms, and organic fields to increase yields with mason bees' efficient pollination. Our ultimate goal is to raise 1 billion mason bees to meet the need of orchards and farms across the country.

Essentially, to participate in BeeBuyBack you will send us healthy mason bee cocoons in exchange for a Crown Bees gift card or a check. Our BeeBuyBack program is active in October of each year.

Need help figuring out how many bee cocoons to keep? We recommend one nesting hole per mason bee cocoon. For example, to maintain the population of your 48-hole nesting tray, keep about 50 cocoons. If you want to keep more bees, purchase extra nesting holes to add your bee house.

Updates to the BeeBuyBack Program

We have simplified the BeeBuyBack program, making it even easier for you to participate.

  1. Submissions are accepted on a first come, first serve basis. This policy is to ensure the health of the mason bee cocoons.
  2. For 2018, mason bee cocoon submissions can only be redeemed for a Crown Bees gift card or check. For the check option, please expect processing of your check to begin the end of November 2018.
  3. The maximum submission per person is 10,000 mason bee cocoons. We want to ensure the genetic diversity of our mason bee cocoons.
  4. We reserve the right to reject a submission based on our assessment of the viability of the mason bee cocoons.


HOW IT WORKS

  1. The form for the BeeBuyBack program will appear below and will become live in October 2019. Fill out the form and select your choice for payment. Print a copy of your submission form that will be sent to your email inbox.
  2. If you harvested your cocoons (preferred), please send us cocoons of both sizes of small and large. We like to ensure there are male and female bee cocoons. Please send us UNWASHED cocoons, we wash all the cocoons received.
  3. Mail your box of loose cocoons or unharvested filled tubes and reeds, padded with a bit of newspaper or paper towels. Don’t forget to include a copy of the form you filled out. Standard US Postal Service Mail is fine and expedited shipping is not necessary.
    • Mailing more than 1500 cocoons: Large numbers of mason bee cocoons create heat which can harm bee cocoons during transit. To prevent heat build-up, place 1 cup of mason bee cocoons into a sandwich bag, leave air in the bag while sealing it, and fill multiple bags in this manner. Add spacers or empty sandwich bags filled with air to keep cocoons apart in the shipping box.
  4. When your box arrives we will open and harvest the nesting material (if applicable), wash and inspect the cocoons for pests and disease, and count the number of viable cocoons. We’ll send you an email telling you what we found (quantity of viable cocoons, pests) and let you know when we’re sending your gift card or check.
  5. We will place your cocoons into bins in our coolers by geographic region. We rehome your bees to gardens, farms, and orchards in similar regions with similar climates. Your amazing pollinators will go on to help grow more food!

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