As an energy auditor, I get to play with some cool tools. I thought I'd take some shots in my backyard after a 13.5 inch snowfall using our Flir IR camera. I was actually looking for heat loss signatures of the house and found some areas I need to correct.
These are two infrared pictures of the hive in my back yard and one of our pond. Lighter colors are warmer than darker colors. The bright spot below the hive is soil releasing warmth to the hive and air above & around it. I'm guessing later this winter as the soil temp lowers, I'll see less heat beneath the hive. I took some shots of my footprints and the lawn beneath the snow was much warmer, showing brightly colored footprints.
Since warm air rises, but heat does not, I am assuming that the cluster is in the upper super, since that's where the main heat signature is. The hive is losing heat around parts of the telescoping cover. The handholds make the hive body thinner, resulting in less R-value. So the handholds show up as a heat signature. I'm thinking of doing some experimenting and might examine our other hives. I figure the better heat signature I get would mean a larger cluster.
Using this color pallette, our pond waterfall looks like a lava flow. Back to the 'lab'. NExt, I'm going to see how the bore scope works on inspection without opening a hive.