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BeeCounted.org: a new site for sharing hive data

Broodminder, the company that brought us affordable electronic devices to monitor the in-hive environment, has now given us a way to compare results with other beekeepers. BeeCounted.org is a site where Broodminder users can post their data for anyone to see and analyze.

The best part is there is no fee, no sign up, or no password to use BeeCounted.org. Just click the link. At the site you can find a map of participating apiaries and see graphs showing temperature, humidity, and weight trends for individual hives.

Although you don’t need a Broodminder device to use the information, you can sign up to participate at any time. Once you have a device installed, you can have your data sent to the site. For your privacy, hives are numbered and only general location information is posted. The official announcement is below.

BroodMinder Launches BeeCounted.org, a New Hive Information Sharing Site

Stoughton, Wisconsin, October 9. BeeCounted.org is a map-based public website where beekeepers and the general public can see the extensive data being collected across the country through BroodMinder products. This information will enable new insights into hive distress and help develop new interventions to improve outcomes. It will give researchers, clubs and backyard beekeepers alike the opportunity to examine a large, standardized data set from which to find solutions to common issues.

BeeCounted.org is the latest offering from BroodMinder, a company conceived by Rich Morris, a backyard beekeeper with a product design background. All BroodMinder products have been developed to address a huge issue that plagues beekeepers: how to get the best decision-making data to keep their bees alive.

BroodMinder products used for BeeCounted.org.
BroodMinder products are used to collect the data for BeeCounted.org.

“Our message is simple: every hive counts and BroodMinder products have been created to give you the reliable, consistent and trackable information you need. BeeCounted.org is the next logical step.” –Rich Morris

It all started simply when Rich was frustrated at losing bees in the Wisconsin winter. In many Midwestern states, more than 40% of hives were lost in 2016. The real issue is that it is difficult to resolve a problem that has no solid information from which to draw conclusions. From his experience working on medical products, Rich knew that the answer was to develop a system that gives you data that can be measured accurately, installed economically and shared widely.

Broodminder has created these devices using Internet of Things (IoT) interconnectivity principles: first, to measure hive temperature and humidity (BroodMinder-TH); second, to measure hive weight (BroodMinder-W). Continual testing all over the United States (with new sites coming on board every month) has enabled them to evolve the devices and their operation. So far, over 5,000 devices have been installed covering more than 1,000 hives with a reachable goal of over 10,000 devices by the end of 2017.

For more information, see BroodMinder.com or BeeCounted.org. You can reach Rich Morris at 608-201-6227.

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Comments

Dave Strickler
Reply

Thanks for the article Rusty! It’s so much fun to watch beekeepers share their data on BeeCounted. Every hive really does count, and we’ve now got the world’s largest collection of honeybee health data, online, for everyone to learn from.

Kirsten Redlich
Reply

It would be very helpful if measures were available in metric & celsius. It is frustrating attempting to convert in order to properly comprehend the data. Perhaps it is available if you own the system, but would also be useful on the Beecounted site.

Rusty
Reply

Kirsten,

Did you know only three countries don’t officially use metric? Burma, Liberia, and the US. What does that tell you? For a while, I was posting both on this site, then for about a year, I went all metric and Celsius. Because of too many complaints, I went back to “English.” I don’t know why we Americans can’t get with the program.

Kirsten Redlich
Reply

Hmmm, I’m afraid you left that comment wide open, for shall we say some cheeky comments re Americans ‘getting with the program’ 😉

J. D. Mesplay
Reply

I like old Rusty

Rusty
Reply

Not sure, but I think this is a complaint?

Charles Carlson
Reply

On the subject of metric versus English measurements, most people don’t grasp the convenience of simple conversions between units that innately built into the metric system. We were so close in my view under Jimmy Carter and then conservatism creep back in and resistance built. It was a trivial issue magnified by Ronald Reagan as a return to American values. It’s not a rationale thing, and some how, some way it’s conflated with American exceptionalism.

I love the idea of Citizen Science and brood monitoring. The telemetry is a bit pricey given the number of measurements, and it really doesn’t make beekeeping any better and easier at this point, but who knows how the data will correlate. It kind of like paying to be part of huge experiment. It seems like the initial package is thoughtfully composed and designed, it’s a high hurdle for mass distribution. It will be interesting to see how it plays out.

Rusty
Reply

Charles,

I remember when we almost converted. If I recall, a date for final implementation had been set. Then it just disappeared. People always complain about how difficult it is to convert between systems, and I can’t convince anyone that once you switch, you don’t have to convert. You just use the new system.

My biggest gripe now is that sometimes packaged goods will give the contents in ounces, say 5, and this will be followed by grams carried out to a half dozen decimal places. What on earth are they thinking?

And here’s another. Ask an American to use two fingers to show the length of an inch. Most will be pretty close. Then ask them to show you a centimeter. Nuff said.

Ames
Reply

Very cool data site. But alas, with over 10 hives I can’t afford the equipment.
Would be cool if in the future you could lease it. Then I could share the crazy swings up here in Maine with the other keepers.

Rusty
Reply

Ames,

Or you could monitor a sample, one or two hives.

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