Beekeeping at the Dartmouth Organic Farm

Students and staff at the Dartmouth Organic Farm take a close look at a new hive of bees. Read more about beekeeping at the organic farm.

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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
Dartmouth Organic Farm Manager Laura Carpenter prepares to lead inspection team to examine bee hives at the farm’s apiary. They carry boxes, called “supers,” which they hope to add to the top layer of each hive box, if the bee colonies are healthy and need more space in which to make honey. (Photo by Robert Gill)
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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
Farm Manager Laura Carpenter scrapes off a resin-like substance called propolis, which bees use to seal up cracks in their hives. Propolis is thought to have health benefits for humans as well as bees. Carpenter uses a special pry bar to loosen the frames that stand side-by-side vertically in the hive, so she can inspect the cell structures bees are building on the frames. (Photo by Robert Gill)
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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
The beekeepers lift out a frame from the hive box to check that it contains bees at all stages of the life cycle, a sign of a healthy hive. (Photo by Robert Gill)
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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
Laura Carpenter, Craig Layne, Thomas Overly, and Marshall Wilson inspect hive frames, looking for the queen bee. (Photo by Robert Gill)
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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
Honeybees at work, building their hive from beeswax, and filling hexagonal cells with nectar, water, and wax. Some cells also contain larvae and eggs. (Photo by Robert Gill)
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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
Farm intern Marshall Wilson (center) helps lift one of the layers of a hive box, as another beekeeper pumps smoke from a can of smoldering hay to keep the bees from becoming too agitated. (Photo by Robert Gill)
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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
Farm Manager Laura Carpenter prepares to lift a frame from a hive box. (Photo by Robert Gill)
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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
(From left) Marshall Wilson ’17, Kate Salamido ’19, and Organic Farm Manager Laura Carpenter closely inspect a beehive frame at the farm’s apiary. They are looking for mites that can harm the population. (Photo by Robert Gill)
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Organic Farm Bee Keepers
A beehive frame shows signs that the hive is expanding, as hexagonal cells extend beyond the wooden borders. (Photo by Robert Gill)