World’s first AI ‘smart hive’ launched to protect the honey bee

17 October 2018

The World Bee Project Hive Network will use AI ‘smart hives’ to collect data on honey bees to give researchers new insights into the relationships between honey bees and their environments.

Cloud company Oracle has partnered with The World Bee Project for the scheme, which will allow researchers in the UK to ‘listen’ to honey bees, analysing intricate acoustic data captured inside the smart hives, including the movement of bees’ wings and feet.

Researchers will also be able to analyse other precision measurements, including temperature, humidity and honey yield, which they say will help them closely monitor bee colonies, detect patterns and predict behaviours.

The data will also help conservationists and beekeepers to take action to protect colonies, such as preventing swarming at the wrong time of year or removing predators like the invasive Asian Hornet.

Bees are responsible for pollinating one-third of the global food supply, however, England’s honey bees are disappearing quicker than anywhere else in Europe.

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