Honey bees are disappearing - play the game to help us collect crucial data on their wellbeing and raise awareness of their plight...
Bees have got a reputation for being busy workers, and rightfully so, as they pollinate roughly a third of the food we eat and plants we depend on.
But, there’s a crisis hitting the bee community. There has been a dramatic decline in numbers, a phenomenon known as Honey bee Colony Collapse Disorder. While we don’t know the exact reasons, what’s clear is the damage this could cause to horticulture, agriculture and, ultimately, our way of life.
Technology is helping uncover what is causing the dramatic change. Bee Smart, for example, has developed a small box of sensors which can be attached to the frame of a beehive. These sensors monitor the temperature, humidity and the colony’s level of activity within the hive, to gauge its health and hopefully discover any clues.
Smart tech is also getting up close and personal with bees. The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) of Australia and its partners have turned to wearable tech. As part of this research, Hitachi scientists have developed ultra-small radio frequency identification (RFID) tags which can be safely attached to honeybees. These tags allow CSIRO to monitor the bee’s activity, to hopefully give information to help save our hardworking honeybees.
To discover more about how these tags work, check out our interactive infographic above. Direct the bee to the flowers to collect pollen to take back to the hive. Every time it safely returns to the hive, the data will be transferred from the RFID tag – the more loops completed, the more data is transferred and the higher the score. But watch out for the obstacles along the way!