With the increasing popularity of urban farming, beekeeping has been moving from rural into urban areas. While this may be good news for the bees, not all neighborhoods welcome the little buzzing creatures. According to a recent article by Meredith May in SF Gate, beekeeping laws can vary by zip code. “In Marin County, it can vary street by street in some cases in the same town. San Rafael, Tiburon, Fairfax and Sausalito require permits. Novato allows backyard hives as long as they ‘are not for commercial purposes.’ Mill Valley bans backyard beekeeping. Larkspur and San Anselmo have no regulations. Within Corte Madera, some neighborhoods ban beekeeping, others don't.” Before you decide to become a backyard beekeeper, check your local zoning ordinances.
If you’re an aspiring apiarist, check out the “bee links” from the U.C. Davis Laidlaw Facility. Your local library has lots of books to help you get started with your new hobby. Look in the catalog under Bee Culture.