I want to reserve some package bees for the spring. Should I look for packages that originate in our climate or does it make any difference?
It's kind of a catch 22, for southern operations. Up north, different characteristics of the different bees come into play with cluster size, shutting down in dearths, overwintering ability, cold hardiness, etc. Being in Florida, I think it would be better to have more southern bees such as Italians. But not ever having bees in Florida, I could be all wrong.
Much of what I do is dictated by the seasons and tailoring the bees best able to deal with those situations. where you are, the mite season may be longer, and many factors are different. So your IPM needs to change for this.
But I agree, nucs are better. And you should have no problem finding a beekeeper in your area to purchase from. No sense in paying for shipping ,etc.