Cardinal Apiaries

Owner: Peter Burt

15 Skyline Drive
Fredericksburg, VA 22406
Stafford County

daytime phone: (571) 722-9472
evening phone: (571) 722-9472
Web site: http://www.cardinalapiaries.com

Application Date: 2014-10-29

General Information

Please briefly tell us why you are applying to have your apiary be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program. *
I keep bees as naturally as possible. My customers view CNG as a badge representing my good beekeeping practices.
Is the land on which your apiary sits currently certified (by CNG or another organization)? *
Has the land on which your apiary sits ever been Certified in the past? *
How did you hear about Certified Naturally Grown? *
Conversations with various beekeepers and customers
Please check all markets where you sell your honey. *

You may use this space to specify where customers can purchase your honey (this will be displayed on your profile to help customers find you).
Customers may order honey via my website, which is www.cardinalapiaries.com
How many hives are in your apiary (or apiaries)? *
For how long have you been keeping bees? What has prepared you to do this successfully according to CNG standards? *
Before continuing, please take a moment to review the 5 steps to Apiary Certification. (You may do this by clicking the link below.) Are they clear? *

Apiary Location and Position

Some beekeepers seek certification for more than one apiary. Please provide the location (or locations) of the apiary (or apiaries) for which you seek certification. *
My single apiary is at 15 Skyline Drive, Fredericksburg, VA
Briefly describe the landscape where the apiary is located. What surrounds the apiary? What are the nectar sources? *
Surrounded mainly by open fields and woods. This is not a heavily developed location. Nectar and pollen are collected from a host of floral sources in those fields and woods.
Do you own or manage the land on which your apiary is located? (If at least one of your apiaries is on land you own or manage, answer yes.) *
Do you agree not to use on this land any synthetic materials that are not allowed under the CNG produce or honey programs? *
At this time, I do not use any disallowed materials. I attempt to do all of my home food production free of synthetic chemicals - particularly those that harm bees.
Use this space to describe any land management practices you use to support the honey bee population. *
The bees forage primarily on neighboring property; therefore, the best practice for me is to educate my neighbors about honeybee needs.
Within each apiary for which you seek certification, do you manage any hives "conventionally", using practices or substances that are not allowed under the CNG apiary standards? *

Hive Construction, Components, and Brood Comb Removal

Do your hives have any paint or chemical treatment on the interior surface of the hive? *
Do you have, or will you develop, a labeling system and schedule to ensure removal of at least 20% of brood frame per year, such that there is never brood comb present that is more than 5 years old? *
Please briefly describe your brood comb removal practices to date, and your plans for the coming seasons. *
To date, I have removed only comb that is blackened or otherwise damaged or unsuitable for use. At present, I am switching to wooden frames, and am marking the new frames for removal on a 5-year interval. All plastic frames and all frames from other beekeepers are being removed as part of this process, which I expect to complete in summer 2015.

Apiary Transition

Does your apiary contain brood comb that A) is from another beekeeper (including from purchased nuc), or B) has been exposed to Tylan, or C) has been exposed to three or more treatments of fluvalinate (Apistan, Mavrik) or amitraz (Miticur, Taktic, or Mitak)? *
Will you ensure that, through brood comb replacement or operation expansion, no more than 40% of the exposed comb will be present in the apiaries to be certified, AND that the exposed comb that remains will be marked and removed from your apiary within two years? Your apiary will have transitional status until all exposed comb is replaced. *
Please indicate the month and year when you expect you will have replaced all marked brood comb (the comb that was purchased from another beekeeper, treated with Tylan, and/or exposed to three or more more treatments of fluvalinate or amitraz)? *
June 2015
Has any wax or comb in your apiary ever been exposed to coumaphos (CheckMite+) or fenpyroximate (Hivastan), or more than six indirect exposures of coumaphos (CheckMite+), hydramethylnon or fipronil (Max Force Gel roach baite) as closed trapping for SHBs?

General Bee Maintenance and Care

Describe how you maintain your bee population from one season to the next. Do you rely on survivor colonies, incorporate feral colonies, purchase new bees every year, or some combination of these and/or other practices? *
Primary strategy is to prepare my colonies to survive through the winter and be strong in the spring. Make splits in the spring. Incorporate feral colonies as opportunity arises. I have not purchased bees in more than three years.
Do you sometimes feed the bees when honey supers are on the hive, or within two weeks before honey super addition? *
If and when your bees require supplemental feeding, what do you feed them? Please be specific and include all ingredients. *
table sugar in syrup or candy form. Typically add essential oils of lemongrass, spearmint, and/or wintergreen. Occasionally will feed crystalized honey from my own bees.

Management of Pests and Disease

Varroa Mite
Please briefly describe what measures you take to suppress the Varroa mite population in your hives. *
I apply Apiguard AFTER the honey crop is harvested. Typically apply in late July or early August. Single treatment cycle per year, following label instructions. Most of my colonies are on screen bottom boards, which may help with varroa.
How do you monitor mite population levels? When and how often? *
24 hour natural mite drop after the annual honey harvest in July. A second drop is not measured, because I treat only one time per year.
Before treating any hive for Varroa mites, will you monitor the Varroa mite infestation level to determine whether it exceeds the treatment threshold set by your local network? (If you run a survivor colony, and you never treat, please answer Yes.) *
If you choose to treat colonies infested with Varroa mites, will you keep records of treatment methods, along with pre- and post-treatment monitoring results? *
American and European Foulbrood
How do you prevent and treat American Foulbrood (AFB) and European Foulbrood (EFB)? *
I have never seen either disease in any of my colonies. I assure proper hive location and ventilation to discourage moist conditions, and never purchase or accept used woodenware from any source.
How do you prevent and treat Nosema? *
I doubt it is possible to totally prevent n. ceranae. I attempt to maintain strong, low-stress colonies. I administer essential oils (lemongrass, spearmint, and/or wintergreen) in syrup fed during summer dearth.
Other Diseases
What has been your experience with other diseases (such as chalkbrood, viral diseases, wax moths, small hive beetle)? How have you dealt with them? How will you deal with them if they recur? *
Of this category, only wax moths and hive beetles have been an issue in my colonies. Neither pest is a significant problem for strong colonies. I have not used beetle traps in the past, but may do so if I feel it would be prudent. Generally, I attempt to keep strong colonies and to manage weak ones before moths or beetles become a problem. I attempt to give the bees only as much room as they can effectively manage so that pests cannot hide in abandoned corners of the hive. I freeze all woodenware and combs from infested colonies before using on another colony. I may reduce entrances on any colony that is infested with moths or beetles. If the colony is too far gone, I seal it up and put the whole thing in the deep freeze, clean everything thoroughly, and redeploy the equipment. If I find a weak colony that has moths or beetles, I take any one of a number of steps to strengthen the colony (add bees, reduce hive volume, etc) or, if that is not practical, seal and freeze. It is poor husbandry to allow a failed colony to become a vector for disease and parasites.
What measures do you take, if any, to protect the hives against pests such as mice, skunks, possums, raccoons, and bears? *
most of my colonies are 8 inches off the ground, which discourages pests. I've not had problems with any mammalian pests.
Please describe any other practices you follow to help strengthen the bee population under your care.
I take care of mites before Labor Day and feed generously to sustain the bees during summer and into fall so that the colonies have the best chance of winter survival. I avoid spraying poison on my property and encourage my neighbors to do the same. My bees are an integral part of my family's food production plan, which includes planting orchard, bramble, and shrub food sources that are useful to my family, bees, and other wildlife.

Colonies Engaged in Pollination Services

Are your colonies engaged in pollination by contract? *

Local Networks

Are you a part of a local network of beekeepers using natural methods? This could be a formal network like a county beekeepers association, or it could be an informal network of beekeepers in your area with a commitment to using natural methods. *
If this is a formal network please indicate the name of the network below. (If it is not a formal network, please simply write "informal".) *
Loudoun Beekeeper Association
If this is an informal network, please indicate below the names of at least two other beekeepers who participate. They do not need to be CNG beekeepers, but they do need to have some commitment to and knowledge of natural practices. (If you're part of a formal network, please simply write "see above") *
see above


Please indicate your agreement with the following statements by entering your name/s in the spaces following the statements.
I/we will only use the Certified Naturally Grown name and label on apiary products (honey, pollen, propolis) that are in fact from the CNG apiaries described in this application. *
Pete Burt
I/we understand that CNG beeswax certification is a separate process (not yet available in 2010), and that the basic Apiary Certification doesn't confer CNG status on beeswax. *
Pete Burt
I/we understand the CNG work requirements: A) To complete at least one certification inspection of another CNG apiary in my area each year. B) To arrange an annual inspection of my/our apiary, to be carried out by a qualified inspector as outlined in CNG informational materials. *
Pete Burt
I/we have reviewed the Certified Naturally Grown standards, understand them, and will abide by them. I/we understand that if I/we have any questions I/we may contact CNG for clarification. *
Pete Burt
You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm: