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Did you know that bees arrived from ancient wasps, which lived over 130 million years ago? 

Back then and today, their purpose was to build, defend and gather food for their nest and offspring.  Bees are vital creatures because they serve as pollinators and are essential to every part of our ecosystem.  They offer support for tree growth, flowers, and plants that make it possible for these parts of our world to provide food, enabling shelter for more significant and small creatures.  Unfortunately, the bee population is declining worldwide because of how people live, herbicides, insecticides, and pesticides.  Throughout this article, I will share how bees do their daily tasks and how AI may be the solution to keep bees alive.

A honey bee colony has three adult bee types: 

workers, drones, and a queen.  Did you know that several thousand bees work together to build their nest, collect food, and be part of the brooding process?   After the 3rd day, the egg hatches, which releases a larva and is fed before capping.  Caping is a process where the bees shed bee wax to preserve the honey so it doesn’t collect moisture from the atmosphere, and after 13 days, the new bee is released as a baby caterpillar.  This same bee wax is used to help protect the newborn before it becomes an adult bee.  Please think of the bee birth as three days being an egg, five days as a larva, and then 13 days as a pupa, and then it is considered an adult bee.  Important to note that all larvae are given royal jelly, a protein-rich food produced from the worker bees' glands.

First, there is only one queen bee in the hive; her only job is to lay eggs, and the drone’s job is to mate with the bee. 

The worker bees perform all other tasks, such as:  gathering nectar, guarding the hive and honey, caring for the queen and larvae, cleaning the pack, produce honey.  Bees visit flowers to obtain nectar placed into the honeycomb in the hive and broken down into simple sugars.  The worker bees in the hive constantly flap their wings with the honeycomb design facilitating evaporation, producing honey.

Did you know that an average hive will yield about 55 lbs. of honey that may be taken from the pack? 

Beekeepers must remove the grids and scrape the wax caps off the bees that seal the love.  Then the grids are put into a centrifuge that spins at high speeds, forcing the honey out of the combs.  During a busy time, a colony will fill a ten-frame honey grid in about 2-3 days, but if it’s a smaller colony, the process could take about 1-2two weeks.  One 12 of a teaspoon is all a bee will make in its lifetime, averaging about 36 days or 3-4 months in winter.  Thus, if we do the math, it will take about 12 bees to produce one teaspoon of honey.

The queen bee is an integral part of the hive, and before a new queen may be introduced, the old queen must be removed. 

Never directly place a new queen into the pack, or the other bees may kill her.  The proper procedure is to put the bee between the combs with the honey on her, and within a few days to a week, she will be set free and usually accepted into the hive.

A new company in Beit HaEmek, Israel, has devised the first automated AI bee hive-management system powered by solar energy.

  First, the unit is placed in your field populated with bees, and it uses a robot to manage your bees in real time.  They even provide access to vital information, remote hive management, which starts at about $2000.00 for delivery and approximately $400.00 per month for the rental, and (SAAS) Software as a service.  Each bee hive home can handle 24 hives. 

Beewise has some exciting features to help manage your bees, provide invaluable data, and autonomous swarm prevention regulated by AI. 

The home monitors climate conditions such as temperature and humidity.  When the home detects that the colony is about to swarm, it adjusts the conditions as necessary.  They also have a system that continuously monitors pests in the hive and, when necessary, applies a non-chemical only where needed in real-time.  This process alone reduces infection rates, infestation, and annual colony loss.  The bee home does this by heating the frames only to a point to harm the Varroa but not the bees. 

Did you know the home even monitors fully populated frames and automatically harvests them to an onboard container that can hold 100 gallons? 

When the container reaches 100 gallons, the system notifies to empty it.  Every home has its feeder frame, filled by the robot when the beekeeper decides they want to feed a colony.  Should the home detect a harmful substance, it emails the beekeeper and immediately shuts all the entrances to the hives.

Now that you have invested in this, you are probably wondering what if someone tries to steal this.  No problem, there is a GPS keeping so the owner knows the home's location, and an alert will be sent if the bee home is moved.  Yes, the beekeeper may enter the house and manually do what the robot does anytime they want.

Many groups across the US use AI with a hive sensor to track the number of bees leaving the hive and the number returning.

  If the number comes back lower than what went out, there is a problem. 

These teams share their data with other professionals to help decide where to plant more trees and flowers to help the world's ecosystem.

One of my clients and friends in Franklin Lakes recently asked me to check their bee hives out.  I was a bit petrified to do so since my last run-in with a bee didn’t end up well when I was four, and I got stung.  He said they don’t worry, they are friendly bees, and they like people who are wearing light clothing, and since I had a white shirt on and tan shorts, they should not be alarmed by me.  He & his wife, and I walked over to their garden area, where they had several hives in it while I barely took baby steps to get closer.  After a few minutes of them flying around me and not stinging me, I decided to get closer.  I could see the hive, and then I walked out, and the bees didn’t bother or sting m.  Also, thanks to them for allowing me to see their bee hives and how they work; it fascinated me to learn about this and be an inspiration for this article.

Thus, bees are not as dangerous as many make them out to be, and they don’t want to sting you because if they do, they die. 

Their stinger has their stomach and 80% of their digestive organs.  Remember to wear light clothing, don’t swat or make sudden moments around them, and they should not bother you.  Remember, they have several important jobs to do, not to mention making honey which is no small task for a bee.  Maybe this company or others will emerge to make smaller AI bee homes for personal and small farmer use.


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