monitor honeybee health parameters in a hive, interesting project video

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Feb 5, 2009, 1:41:55 AM2/5/09
to DIYbio
Ran across this in-progress project. Uses a microcontroller with
ethernet & web interface to monitor honeybees. The link has 2 videos
describing the hardware and software. Biohacking (biology + garage
hacking, not GMO). Prior to recent news regarding 'something'
happening to worldwide bee ecology, I didn't realize how interesting
(and necessary) such tracking is.

I don't know if this is the permalink - it could disappear since it's
a design contest, so watch it ASAP if you want.


Functional areas monitored by the PIC32 are:
• Outside the hive ambient conditions
• Inside the hive environmental conditions
• Health of the hive (brood size and bee traffic)
• Bee behavior for swarm management, detection / prevention
• Honey production
• Security of the hive
• Self diagnostics (temperature and voltage levels of the system
controller, and functionality of sensors throughout the beehive)
There are some hive environmental conditions that can be controlled
such as:
• Ventilation
• Temperature (heat or cool)
• Entrance opening for hive protection against predators
• Rain simulation (to keep bees inside hive)
• Induce vibration, smoke and sound in the hive to measure bee
behavior patterns
Additional PIC32 tasks:
A good researcher keeps accurate records of their work. The PIC32 can
optionally have a voice input to record observations to a removable
USB memory stick for later playback Additionally this memory stick
will contain a data log of all measured parameters. All data recorded
will be time stamped. The PIC32 will recognize key words or phrases so
that specific data log items can then be written to the memory stick
in a format to load directly into a spreadsheet. The USB memory may
then be downloaded via the embedded web server or removed for transfer
directly to a PC by the researcher.
Other possible monitored functions:
• Pollen collection (amount and type)
• Track and map the queen bee location in the hive
o This can be done by gluing a micro LC resonance circuit to the
queen’s thorax. Circuitry around the hive can then track its location.
• Veroa mite count
o A detector can be placed under the beehive to qualify droppings as
mites and not bits of debris.
• Automatic feeder (syrup and patty) with consumption data logging
Security of the beehive is done by monitoring motion around the hive
with IR detectors. Tampering of the beehive is determined by a ‘lid
open’ switch. Movement of the beehive is monitored by a motion or tilt
switch to trigger a GPS location of the hive. Any security breach will
trigger a cell phone that is preprogrammed to call the beekeeper,
researcher or SWAT team and give a voice status of the problem.
Software functions of the PIC32 include the following to either set,
alert, or track and graph the minimum, maximum, and average values to
the embedded web server:
• Set the RTC / TOD clock
• Hive temperatures and alarms (too high or too low)
• Tamper alarm limits exceeded
• Sound level limits exceeded
• Hive weight
• Bee weight
• Maintenance schedule
o Feeding
o Drone control
o Mite control

## Jonathan Cline
## Mobile: +1-805-617-0223

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