Capital Bees

Owner: Ron St. Louis

Ottawa, ON

daytime phone: (613) 852-5063
Web site: http://www.capitalbees.ca

Application Date: 2018-04-10

General Information

Please briefly tell us why you are applying to have your apiary be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program. *
We are located on an organic certified farm and we keep bees in a organic/natural way but we can't be certified because of the proximity to other private properties. I have reviewed all of the requirements and I already have been using these practices for several years.
Is the land on which your apiary sits currently certified (by CNG or another organization)? *
Which agency is the certifier (for example CCOF, PCO, NOFA, Demeter)? What type of certification (Organic, Biodynamic, etc) does the land have? *
The farm operations are certified by ECO Cert
Has the land on which your apiary sits ever been Certified in the past? *
Who was the certifying agency (CCOF, PCO, NOFA, Demeter, etc) and what type of certification did they provide (Organic, Biodynamic)? *
ECO Cert
When was the land certified, and why is it no longer certified? *
Since 2013 or 2014. I can verify if required.
How did you hear about Certified Naturally Grown? *
A friend
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).
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. *
secondary locations to be determined
Briefly describe the landscape where the apiary is located. What surrounds the apiary? What are the nectar sources? *
Located on a 150 acre farmstead in the Ottawa Greenbelt on the west side of Blackburn Hamlet. There is a huge diversity of trees and wildflowers. Predominant harvest is goldenrod, clovers, milkweed, dandelion, and purple loosetrife.
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.) *
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. *
I believe that brood comb cycling is a major component of Integrated Pest Management. I remove 20-40% of brood comb yearly in every hive. I do not use a marking system (I tried and stopped due to workload) but I prefer to simply remove the darkest and most used combs every year. I cycle the comb out by setting it to the outer part of the brood nest or move them up above the queen excluder. Once the brood has all hatched out, I extract the honey and scrape out or replace the foundation.

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)? *
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? *
I became a member of the Ontario Resistant Honey Bee Selection (ORHBS) program which is part of the Ontario Beekeepers' Association's Tech Transfer Program. I do splits and catch swarms from my own operation. I do not incorporate feral colonies because I have not had positive experience with unknown genetics. I purchase a few queens now and then from local 'natural' beekeepers or from peers in the ORHBS program to maintain genetic diversity.
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. *
Very rarely and only as a last resort I will feed them white sugar, sometimes mixed with a bit of Honey B Healthy and apple cider vinegar.

Management of Pests and Disease

Varroa Mite
Please briefly describe what measures you take to suppress the Varroa mite population in your hives. *
Integrated Pest Management. Screened bottom boards, splits, brood breaks, oxalic acid drip or sublimation, formic acid (MAQS), thymovar.
How do you monitor mite population levels? When and how often? *
Mostly with screened bottom boards but I do a few alcohol washes to confirm. I do them several times a year every season and quite often in fall. Always before and after treatments. I have written an article on this for the Ontario Beekeeping Journal and it is set to be published in May or June.
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)? *
Integrated Pest Management, cycling old brood comb, hygienic stock selection. I raise hygienic bees and do hygienic testing as a member of the ORHBS program.
How do you prevent and treat Nosema? *
By keeping strong healthy colonies. Cycling brood comb.
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? *
A few rare occurences of chalkbrood in the spring but it always clears up. I make sure to requeen with more hygienic stock. Keeping strong colonies is the best defense against wax moth and small hive beetle. Small hive beetle has not been a problem in this area yet.
What measures do you take, if any, to protect the hives against pests such as mice, skunks, possums, raccoons, and bears? *
A few welcome mats for the skunks. Entrance reducers for the mice. No bears in the area <knocks wood> but I have installed electric fencing on a previous rural property.
Please describe any other practices you follow to help strengthen the bee population under your care.
I am very conservative with honey harvest, leaving them with lots of honey and pollen for the winter. I wrap my hives and have started overwintering nucs. I am a registered queen and nuc seller.

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".) *
Ontario Beekeepers' Association Ontario Bee Breeders Association Ontario Resistant Honey Bee Selection program Eastern Ontario Beekeepers' Association Ottawa Community Beekeepers In 2014 I participated in the Farms at Work beekeeping mentorship program I am a member of several local and global facebook beekeeping groups I also teach a natural beekeeping program and have a network of former students
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. *
Ron St. Louis
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. *
Ron St. Louis
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. *
Ron St. Louis
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. *
Ron St. Louis
You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm: