Honeyflow.com | FAQ's | Community |

Hive Genie, check this gadget!


#1

Hi Guys, I am writing to you today, because we are about one week away from launching our Hive Genie to Indiegogo.
I would love all of your opinions, since most of you are potential users for this and beeks, like me… The Hive Genie is a gadget that you slide into your hive entrance. It counts or discounts bees as they enter or leave the hive, measures weight, temperature, relative humidity and light intensity. Data is sent to the cloud and if something goes wrong it will send you alarms to your mobile. But the best part is that the Hive Genie is not only a monitor but can also control things like: fans, heaters, traps and YES THE FLOW HIVE!!! If our campaign is successful, one of our stretch goals is to design and add-on with a relay and a valve. How cool would it be to operate your Flow Hive from your phone!

The Hive Genie has the potential to save many hives by using the advantages of big data and Geo referenced information (GIS). Researchers and us beeks will benefit from real time information from all the hives from around the world. We can save the bees from CCD, map varroa mites, africanization and other diseases and deaths and cross reference them against fumigation and such. Please help us and join us and spread the word!

Please check our campaign as we tweak it, it is not yet ready, and the best part which is the video is about a week away. but we would love your feed back.Hive Genie Indiegogo campaign
Also check our website Hive Genie web site

Thank you all!
Mario Chapa Environmental Engineer/Beek


HIVE GENIE fundraising on Indiegogo
#2

Tried to check it out but got an invalid page error from indegogo.

Can you explain to me how your product can control or prevent Africanization?


#3

I was probably working on it, try it again here Hive Genie

It can’t prevent africanization, but can monitor it geographically. Also, it can detect when the Africans get into the hive because the bee count would be much higher than usual, so more bees would go in that cam out. This would trigger an alarm in the system and you would know before you get too close!

If you monitor africanization closely, then you can set up swarm traps in a “geographical net” if you will, thus increasing your chances for interception. The key here is the information capability that we will generate.


#4

@MarioChapa Mario I’ve just read your web page - Quite a lot of claims but I figure presently you only monitor-

  1. Bees going in and out - numbers. How does it know internal hive numbers?
  2. Hive weight with a probe under the Box on one edge?
  3. Ambient Temp inside and out side the hive - temperature probe
  4. Ambient Light - light sensor
  5. How does it tell you what the Queen is laying? Does it come equipped with a camera?
  6. How does it know about infestations? Is there a way or means of detecting foreign invaders?
  7. Does it detect and understand the hive pheromones?

What specifically does it presently actually measure?
I understand you have used open source and that others can then use your code to “Add On” functions, apps etc and the possibilities are "endless"
Is it wireless.
Does it require a phone chip?
How do you access the cloud, does it do Android/ Apple or OS only?

More information would be useful


#5

It has WiFi. if you don’t have WiFi signal in your hive, you can buy a router in Amazon for $30 USD that can solve this problem and use the cell phone network to connect to the cloud.

It is an Arduino based microcontroller. We have engineered in such a way as to leave 3 to 6 pins for output, that is control things… I will now answer your questions in order:
1, About counting bees. Let’s assume that you have 30,000 foragers in your hive (which is typical average), so in the morning, 30,000 bees will go out, the counter counts how many bees go out, as they complete their rounds, some will come back and exit again. So the number of bees out will be changing over time, but at the end of the day only three things can happen: The number of bees that came back is less than the ones that left. This is the normal thing, you expect to loose around 1000 bees at the honey flow per day. Your Queen can lay more than 1900 eggs a day so you are fine. If you loose say 5000 a day, you can safely assume that some pesticide is killing your bees. Your Queen won’t be able to keep up you may loose your hive in as little as 5 to 10 days! And perhaps call it CCD!

The other thing that can happen but would be rare, is that the exact number of bees that exited came back in.

The third thing would be you get 20,000 bees more into your hive, therefore, africanization. Now, if the activity doubles and the weight decreases, then you are being robbed. If all the bees are going out and no be is coming in, then, your bees are about to swarm, You have may be a couple of hours to catch them. Hive Genie will let you know within minutes of any of these things happening!

  1. Weight is measured by a probe under the front end of the hive and we just double the weight. It is a rough estimate but the trend is what you need. Over time with your personal feedback you can figure out a correction factor.

  2. Yes temp probe inside and out and the same probe cam measure relative Humidity.

  3. Ambient light detector is important so if you have a lot of nocturnal activity, then moths may be coming in or your bees are under attack by a skunk or something like it.

  4. OK, to determine if the Queen is laying we keep the count. Let’s say 30,000 bees exited yesterday and 29,000 came back. If today another 30,000 exit, then you can assume that the Queen is laying at least enough to replace the death toll. On the contrary if 29,000 go out today, and tomorrow 28,000 and so on, you may have no Queen. Also, when the Queen is laying, the temperature is pretty stable at around 33-34 ºC and if there is no Queen, temp inside the hive will vary throughout the day.

So counting bees bidirectionally actually tells a very good story of what is going on inside and outside of your hive!

About the camera: SORRY it does not for two reasons:
A. The image signal take a lot of space in the controller so we wouldn’t be able to count or weigh bees, which in my mind are the two most important pieces of information. A camera only tells you what is going on in the parts you can see, as weight and count tell you the whole story, even about foraging dangers.

B. A camera and servos to move it would cost as much as a GoPro, in which case you just go and buy a GoPro.
I am not saying that is not a good idea, but for now it is not a priority. Maybe if lots of beeks ask we can develop something in the near future.

  1. I think this is explained above. The fact that all the alarms are on the cloud means that as we gather more info we can fine tune and correlate more things…

  2. Currently it does not has a nose, maybe in the future we can find a sensor that detects this! Exciting isn’t it?

Actually we can measure:
Bees bidirectionally
Temp and humidity
Weight
Light intensity

So we tested all this.

Hope this info is useful, will be glad to answer more questions…


#6

A bit like the Arnia, then?


#7

Sounds like it, but if it works as well at potentially 1/10th the cost… I have been looking at systems like this and instantly ruled out Arnia for a cost reason when there are others that do the same things for 1/3 as much on the market right now. Not to mention Arnia also requires a yearly membership fee which no one else does to date.


#8

Yea, ARNIA is a great system, but Hive Genie costs 10 times less, so it will be from $69 USD for the simplest one to $199.00 USD for the full package… The main difference is that we count bees rather than listen to them. Don’t get me wrong, ARNIA is a great system, and I love it. I believe that George has made an excellent job! We just have different manufacturing strengths. That’s all.


#9

Also, Hive Genie has control capabilities! Imagine the possibilities!


#10

Well, call me old fashioned but I like ambling across the apiary in the sunshine, smoker in hand (though not used much) to open the hives not quite knowing everything I will see. I even like that sunken feeling of "oh no…queen cells and running for more kit"
Or even once " B****R !!! after looking for an absent queen for half an hour a swarm rose from the trees behind me and disappeared across the fields…had a certain frisson :smile:


#11

Will your campaign have a flow control stretch goal?


#12

Personally I’m with Dee.

I got bees to help with bee populations and hands on for me seems the better way to go - For a commercial Beek with 50 - 100 hive on a sight it may be worth it. But you may want to consider a central controller and probes only in the hive - make use of the WiFi and router

I’m not a bit App user - my phone is Android for calls, texts and peeps occasionally send receive photies, I rarely use internet on my phone. It would probably run off my home router but really, my bees are in my backyard.

I have no thoughts to an out apiary at this stage


#13

That sounds kind of frustrating. And given that I have to have mine in my backyard where it could potentially aggravate neighbors the more I can stay on top of swarms, and other issues and keep things running smoothly the better. Not to mention professionally and personally I love to track things, numbers-wise, these tools appeal to me immensely. Right now the cost is the only limiting factor, the most affordable one out there right now that I have found to date is still $500.

Unfortunately my local club is not very forthcoming with mentors or education outside of their monthly talks. It’s a big “good ole boys club”. This is so bad that I have considered trying to start a new beekeeping association just to try to form something that is useful to beginners. So I’m pretty much going to be getting back into this on my own with the help of my dad and uncle for advice and experience, plus what I remember from being into it as a kid. If I can get some viable electronic mentoring on when to do certain things, or when issues might be happening. I will gladly take it.


#17

We are seriously thinking on it…


#21

@JeffH I’ll convert you to Flow if it is the last thing I do but I’ll leave the Boy’s to their toys for the genie gadget


#26

I would like to say that Flow Hive, or Honey Flow do not endorse this product in particular.

This area is for bee keeping suppliers to advertise their wares. We have no personal or professional affiliates with the suppliers or sellers on this forum. We normally ask for the seller to at least contribute to the forum in a useful way with information, knowledge, etc., not just selling their wares. The seller is only to advertise in the one area, without links all over the forum. If any member finds any seller inappropriate - please let one of the Flow team or moderators know.

This is an open discussion on a product, and as such, the individual looking into this, needs to make their own decision, based on what is best for them.

Flow has recommended joining local bee clubs, connecting with local bee keepers, getting mentors if appropriate, reading about bee keeping, and keeping informed on this forum.

Please make sure, as with every decision - that you make the best decision for you and your circumstances at the time and that you do your own research.


#31

Hi Valli, I’ll get to experience the Flow hives in Dec. (I think) Some honey customers have 2 hives arriving & want me to supply bees & tuition. I’m confident I’ll be able get the honey Flow working successfully before our winter in June. Look out for my video updates.


#32

One of the drawbacks of the September delivery for the northern hemisphere. It is really late to be launching a new hive. And in many places not a great time to be adding a new super to an existing hive, just a bit late in our season.

I just keep reminding myself that the December delivery is perfect for me, Jan and Feb to build and finish and then the swarms start in March or April ; -)

The December sounds as if it will be fine for the South as well, just not as much leisure for building etc.

And I totally am thinking about the genie. I have been looking at APiS Tech also. Anyone else notice this one?


#33

I know, mine will arrive in December too! Just in time to catch some swarms maybe?


#35

This sounds really interesting. However I’m sad that the cheaper one will not be upgradable (it is listed as not being as “pluggable” as the others). Is there any chance that you could open it up to be fully upgradeable? Or perhaps that I am reading it wrong? $169 is a lot to gamble on such an early-stage product.