Walker's Apiary

Owner: Ray & Janet Walker

351 Wedgewood Road
Newark, DE 19711
New castle County

daytime phone: (302) 731-0427
evening phone: (302) 731-0427

Application Date: 2013-01-04

General Information

Please briefly tell us why you are applying to have your apiary be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program. *
Walker's Apiary started operations in 2012 using natural beekeeping methods with the mission of sustaining healthy bee colonies in hygienic hives. We strive to keep local bee subspecies with a history of survival in our location's climate and environment. We plan to follow the "Handbook for Natural Beekeeping" standards in 2013. We want to create a local network of beekeepers who can support our objectives. We believe the Certification process will help use create our network and support our apiary's mission and objectives.
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? *
By browsing the Internet for "Natural Beekeeping Practices".
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).
Delaware Beekeeper's Association website: http://delawarebeekeepers.com/store.html
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. *
351 Wedgewood Road Newark, DE 19711
Briefly describe the landscape where the apiary is located. What surrounds the apiary? What are the nectar sources? *
Walker's Apiary is located near White Clay Preserve and the Kranz Farm CSA location north of Newark DE. Our bees forage in the Preserve and CSA farmland as well as surrounding suburban landscape. Nectar sources include abundant native wildflowers (clovers are dominant flower nectar source), and trees (Tulip Poplar and Russian Olive are dominate tree nectars).
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? *
Use this space to describe any land management practices you use to support the honey bee population. *
We manage and cultivate lawn and flower gardens to maximize pollen and nectar sources for our bees. We provide access to fresh water supplies. We encourage neighbors and gardeners to use sustainable & natural/organic practices.
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. *
All our hives combs were created in 2012 except 30 frames from 1 nuc and 2 splits we obtained from local beekeepers to start our apiary in the spring. These frames are marked and will be removed from our hives by the spring of 2014.

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)? *
May 2014
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? *
We will rely on survivor colonies, incorporate feral colonies or purchase 1 local nuc if necessary to maintain 5 or 6 colonies in 2013.
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. *
In our first year of operation we only fed our bees cane sugar/syrup with a minimum amount of Pro-Health (lemongrass and spearmint oils) in early spring to stimulate wax production on new foundations - prior to nectar flows. We have provided access to cane sugar blocks in our first winter as an "emergency" reserve.

Management of Pests and Disease

Varroa Mite
Please briefly describe what measures you take to suppress the Varroa mite population in your hives. *
We use Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices, screened bottom boards and screened inner covers for ventilation. In our first year of operation we monitored mite populations but did not have mite problems. In our second year, we plan to continue IPM and mite monitoring, use drone removal/freezing and hive splits to interrupt brood cycles.
How do you monitor mite population levels? When and how often? *
Yes, sugar shakes, drone brood uncapping and sticky board inspections - starting June 1 and repeating every 4-6 weeks until October 1. We will keep hive record mite counts to determine the peak population period and develop a mite control strategy for the 2014 season.
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)? *
We've located our hives in a sunny and dry location, and use IPM practices - screened bottom boards and screened inner covers. We've used only new woodenware/beekeeping equipment and do not interchange equipment or bees/brood with other apiary locations (except our first year of operation when we acquired 1 nuc and 2 splits from local beekeepers).
How do you prevent and treat Nosema? *
We prevent by using sanitary equipment and maintaining hygienic well ventilated hives in sunny locations. We have not treated, but would use "recommended" handbook procedures if needed in the future.
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? *
We have not experienced any diseases in our first year of operation. If we need to deal with them in the future, we will use "recommended" handbook practices.
What measures do you take, if any, to protect the hives against pests such as mice, skunks, possums, raccoons, and bears? *
We are using entrance reducers and mice guards in the fall/winter and our apiary in enclosed in a fenced area.
Please describe any other practices you follow to help strengthen the bee population under your care.
We plan to establish a network with other local natural beekeepers, The Delaware Beekeepers Association and University of Delaware to build our beekeeping experience and strengthen our local stock's genetics.

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".) *
Delaware Beekeepers 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. *
Ray Walker
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. *
Ray Walker
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. *
Ray Walker
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. *
Ray Walker
You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm: