Swarm of honey bees

The Swarmonitor project aims to develop a tool for diagnostic monitoring of honey bee colonies, by monitoring vibrations in the hive.

The Swarmonitor consortium is carrying out a study investigating changes and patterns in buzzing in the hive which may indicate swarming, health disorders or deterioration in the hive.

There are 600,000 beekeepers in the European sector and the industry generates revenue of more than 400 million euros. However, the number of beekeepers in Europe is declining at an alarming rate. Honey imports to the EU have risen by 20% since 2001. Bees also play a vital role in agricultural productivity and their economic value as pollinators far exceeds all hive products.

A remote monitoring tool would significantly improve the efficiency of beekeeping making it far less time-consuming and costly. Beekeeping currently requires physical visits to the hive and regular inspections.

Swarmonitor Project Work Packages

Investigation of the spatial distribution of honey-bee vibrations in a hiveDetails

Repeatability data for swarming predictionDetails

Experiments for acquisition of the diagnostic information found in vibrational signalDetails

Exploration of algorithms for monitoring honey bee hive condition on the basis of vibrational measurementsDetails

Hardware and software development for a cost-effective monitoring toolDetails