Objectives of the service
miBeez integrates a beekeeping management module, a beehive monitoring module using sensor networks and a decision support module that provides advice and warnings to the producer, taking under consideration internal and external environmental conditions.
These three aspects are provided by relevant miBeez service modules covering all beekeeping activities and responding to emerging beekeepers’ challenges and problems.
miBeez is an integrated toolbox that could be used during all beekeeping activities to help beekeepers manage production, monitor colonies and get advice for optimal decision making, in order to improve quantity and quality of apiculture products, as well as reducing time, cost and efforts.
Unique selling points:
- ‘miBeez’ is a precision apiculture system that integrates both devices and software competences to effectively manage and monitor all beekeeping business activities.
- Decision support module facilitates effective decision making by using science to transform devices derived data to added value information. Moreover, it alerts on time the users in order to prevent beehive and resources losses and at the same time avoiding demanding and time-consuming data monitoring.
- Production monitoring informs on time the users for the production status of beehives and furthermore provides relevant statistics in order to evaluate beehives development and dynamic status and past applied practices.
- Beekeepers card and calendar enables easy note keeping and activities planning.
- Statistics and reports enable beekeeping past and current conditions evaluation for an effective beekeeping business growth.
Users and their needs
The key customers segments targeted by miBeez are individuals or entities who manage beehives (beekeepers and beekeeping businesses).
- Young to middle aged beekeeper (ready to improve current practices)
- Beekeeper who aspires to expand his/her colonies and business
- Beekeeper who wishes to confront all beekeeping problems by using an integrated and reliable PA solution
- Migratory beekeeper, especially one that needs to go far distance travels for managing his/her apiaries
- Beekeeper that has security issues in his/her apiaries
- Not experienced beekeeper that needs to establish and expand his/her limited knowledge and experience in order to improve the control of his/her colonies
- Beekeeper that aim in improving the marketing of his/her products in order to increase the sales
- Professional beekeeper who wants to feel confident about his/her production and beehives state
- Experienced beekeeper who wants to find solution for dealing with specific issues (i.e. bees health, beehive losses, security, production monitoring)
- Beekeeping association who aspires to support and to increase the efficiency of its members
- A beekeeper who exports or sales high quality beekeeping products
- Beekeeper who is sceptical about PA benefits and wants to try a low-cost service package in order to evaluate and decide later if it fits to his/her business framework
Service/ system concept
The system’s spatial structure consists of three main pillars, the APIARY, the BACK-END and the FRONT-END with the user. First of all, the apiary section includes the beehives which have installed devices such as beehive scales and devices that are monitoring in situ data. All the data are transferred and stored in a database to a cloud server via GPRS (i.e. use of IoT Data Sharing Service). Regarding the back end, it processes and manages data from the devices which are automatically registered in data base as well as “virtual hives” which are registered in the database manually (by the user). The latter is referred to the beehives that are not equipped with any device although beekeepers could register and furthermore add details by themselves at the same time or following apiary visits. The user is able to interact with cloud since he/she accesses all the collected data, statistics, etc., as well as he/she can adds notes, calendar etc. The front-end will be designed and developed in such a way to be operated through tablet, mobiles and PCs. The mobile app (Android and iOS) will be operated either there is internet connection or in off-line mode (last stored data are presented).
Image credit: Terra Spatium
Space Added Value
Space assets are essential for an integrated precision apiculture (PA) system as they provide valuable spatial information to beekeepers. ‘miBeez’ uses significant space assets for the provision of PA products and services.
• Satellite Navigation:
GNSS sensors are integrated in the devices that are placed within the beehives. GNSS sensors automatically identify the coordinates of the apiary and beehives that then are be used to automatically determine the relevant location on the map.
• Satellite Earth Observation:
a) Maps: A GIS is integrated in the system for the maps component. Maps component assimilates weather data, apiaries locations and a reference map providing with spatial features derived from open geospatial and Sentinel satellite data.
b) Weather - current and forecast is integrated in the system. Weather current and forecast is illustrated on the maps component in order to indicate spatial aspects of weather phenomena in the foraging area. Weather earth observation satellites are used among other assets for the weather forecast provision with the highest possible accuracy and reliability.
c) Air quality: In order to anticipate the effect of phenomena as the disruption of scent signals, the system directly benefit from the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS), and specifically from the service “Global analyses of chemical species – ozone”, both for daily analysis, as well as forecasting.
The project miBeez is successfully completed by Dec 2020.
An extended pilot campaign took place around Greece for 4 months’ period engaging several beekeepers with different profile (e.g. hobbyist, companies, part time, etc.).
By pilot phase conclusion, miBeez team took under consideration all received feedback from beekeepers improving system’s characteristics and feature.
The system “miBeez” is already commercially available and it has been purchased by users in Greece and Italy.