Gdynia bees get TLC with help from artificial intelligence
Bees on a rooftop in Gdynia will soon be getting a bit more attention after city authorities installed smart technology to monitor their well-being.
The apiary monitoring system called Smartula will let bee keepers know about humidity, temperature and weight, and will help prevent potential diseases, theft or devastation.
Installed in beehives on the roof of the City Hall, officials say the bee-friendly AI “is a response to the real needs of beekeepers and the desire to ensure the maximum safety of hives.”
Michał Guć , Gdynia Vice President for Innovation, said: “In cooperation with an innovative company, we have implemented a solution called Smartula.
“This is an idea about how to monitor bee welfare. Considered primarily as a support for large apiaries, for places where honey is produced on a large scale, we also decided to support inventors and we are testing this solution in Gdynia.”
The brainchild of students at the Gdańsk University of Technology, Smartula consists of individual devices that are inserted into the hive.
The microphone, humidity, temperature sensors and accelerometers are designed to collect important information from the inside and transmit it to the beekeeper.
The data is then analyzed and presented in a simple web application or smartphone .
Beekeepers can then check the condition of their apiaries on an ongoing basis in the application, without having to physically check the hives.
Co-designer Tymoteusz Cejrowski said: “Our system learns the bee's natural rhythm and tries to inform the beekeeper if it is disturbed.
“The reasons for this behavior may be different, e.g. the phenomenon of swarming when the bees divide and fleeing from the hive, or an attack from wasps, hornets or rodents.
“Additionally, Smartula tries to inform the beekeeper about a potential theft. When implementing the system in the Gdynia hives, we want to see how bees behave in an urban environment and check if their behaviour differs from what is happening in the countryside.
“Thanks to this, we want to help beekeepers in cities and better situate their apiaries.”