Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 20 of 101 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Short version: click here!

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIVY11504PcY2sy2qpRhiMg/live (outside view)

and

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7FH1CCSdg1-W9mlJ52cceQ/live (inside view)

Long version:

Last year we all watched my Swarm Cam in earnest as I caught the catching of a swarm:



That camera was a bit of a DIY project, and the image quality wasn't very good. For this swarm season I wanted to catch the view from inside the hive, so we can watch the scouts examine their potential new home, form the quorum, and then move in with the new colony. Christmas brought some great deals on POE IP security cameras, so I now have this setup:



That's a Reolink RLC-410 looking at the front of the trap, and an RLC-411 looking into the box from the back, through a 3.5" hole, a short length of 3.5" ABS pipe, and a piece of glass:





 

·
Registered
Joined
·
197 Posts
This should be fun ;)
Do you need to seal around the "looking in" camera to stop extraneous light entering? I seem to remember from Seeley that scouts prefer dark cavities, no open mesh floors etc. I'm presuming the camera is IR of course.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
140 Posts
that is awesome. If you could, you might think about putting a scale under the the whole thing. would be interesting to see the weight of the bees you catch, just for fun.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
This should be fun ;)
Do you need to seal around the "looking in" camera to stop extraneous light entering? I seem to remember from Seeley that scouts prefer dark cavities, no open mesh floors etc. I'm presuming the camera is IR of course.
The camera has IR LEDs, and I'm looking through a piece of glass.

The camera is sitting inside a small baffle cut from 3.5" ABS pipe, but yes, I should probably put a shroud or something over the back to block stray light. I'll post a photo of the back side tomorrow.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
that is awesome. If you could, you might think about putting a scale under the the whole thing. would be interesting to see the weight of the bees you catch, just for fun.
Ah, great idea! Thanks!

But I need ideas on how to weigh this thing without buying an expensive hive scale.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,308 Posts
Cool idea there, waterbug. I've been watch your bees on & off all winter on your live-cam. I appreciate all the trouble you go through to keep us winter bound beeks entertained. :applause:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The camera has IR LEDs, and I'm looking through a piece of glass.

The camera is sitting inside a small baffle cut from 3.5" ABS pipe, but yes, I should probably put a shroud or something over the back to block stray light. I'll post a photo of the back side tomorrow.
Baffled:



and shrouded:

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
I wonder if bees can see in the IR range. I have no idea and this is more of a random tangent curiosity.
A good question to ask! I checked before I put this all together.

Bees see in the 300 - 650 nanometer range:

https://news.ncsu.edu/2011/07/wms-what-bees-see/

And IR LEDs emit in the 850 - 940 nm range, so there’s no overlap:

https://ellipsesecurity.com/2018/05/850nm-vs-940nm-ir-illuminator/

The camera shouldn’t disturb them. But the glass window might.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The camera shouldn’t disturb them. But the glass window might.
What I meant to say was that the IR illumination from the camera shouldn't disturb them, but the weirdness of the glass window might.

I originally thought that the glass window might be cold, but now I realize that the camera itself runs a bit warm (~5 Watts), so the window will probably be warmer than the walls of the hive body. I might check that tonight by just putting my hand on it.

And glass doesn't seem to bother bees, as evidenced by all of you who have observation hives.

If I get ambitious I might even put a 3rd camera, here:



and try to replicate something like this comb-building time-lapse.

I can't do that simply right now, because I have no AC power in this shed. I'm powering the cameras via power-over-Ethernet (POE), but I have only one Ethernet cable running 140' from the nearest power point, and while I'm currently using a POE-passthrough-switch, that switch only has 2 power ports, and has barely enough power for two cameras. So to put up a 3rd camera I either need to run another 140' Ethernet cable, or else I need to figure out how to get power fixed in the shed.
 

·
Registered
35
Joined
·
2,039 Posts
But I need ideas on how to weigh this thing without buying an expensive hive scale.
Well, the easy answer is, you buy a cheap hive scale :) While you are shopping for a cheap scale with computer interface, find 150' of extension cords and click on 'add to cart'. And there you have it, the easy answer for 'all problems solved'....

The hive scale we have in the back lot was a little more involved getting set up, we have 400 feet of conduit in the ground and a 15 amp circuit in that conduit, a second conduit in the trench for an optical fiber carrying data, but I needed the power and data back there for other things, so having a 110v plug for the hive scale was not a lot of extra wiring in the process.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
:rolleyes:

Heh. I was thinking more along the lines of a $7.63 Walmart scale, underneath a piece of plywood with a cutout so I can read the dial:

59200480-0c10-47d6-85d1-153440b188d2_1.d8789a98b1517df08cebbb5dd656fb7f.jpg

But because I'm going to be looking for a delta of ~3 lbs or less, a bathroom scale with a range of 0 - 300 lbs probably isn't going to have very good resolution.

So I'm also thinking of something like a scale you'd find at a market, but those are in the $40 range:

61oHI2Z3VSL._SX679_.jpg

There are much cheaper options with a spring scale, but now I'd need to suspend the whole contraption from the ceiling:

61dylwDPKhL._SX679_.jpg

I suppose that would help with the ant problem, though!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,264 Posts
I have one of these under one of my hives with a data logger. It was a bit expensive, but it works well and is easy to put under a hive. It may drift a bit (less than 0.5 lb) when it sits with weight for a while, but it seems to be fairly stable.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00JOSE8X4/ref=oh_aui_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

It is battery operated and you may be able to set it up so the outside camera can pick up the screen. I have no idea how long the batteries will last though.

It should have the resolution to see what is going on. I can see bees coming and going from the hive in the morning/evening.

july weight temperature.jpg
 

·
Registered
35
Joined
·
2,039 Posts
I have one of these under one of my hives with a data logger. It was a bit expensive, but it works well and is easy to put under a hive. It may drift a bit (less than 0.5 lb) when it sits with weight for a while, but it seems to be fairly stable.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00JOSE8X4/ref=oh_aui_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
The description doesn't mention an interface of some type. How does that one interface with your data logger, and what are you using for logging ? As I hunt for a replacement scale I find that prices seem to double when the description mentions some form of computer interface available.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
The description doesn't mention an interface of some type. How does that one interface with your data logger, and what are you using for logging ? As I hunt for a replacement scale I find that prices seem to double when the description mentions some form of computer interface available.
I'm really looking for an inexpensive solution here, as it's not my main mission, so my "interface" will be me, looking at the scale and writing down the reading!

But yes, down the road I would like to have a fully-instrumented hive that reads out weight, temperature, humidity, bee-flow, etc., etc., etc.

I finally got around to downloading the 1.2 GB MP4 of my "move-in" event from last spring, and now that I have the video locally on my computer, I can "scrub" through it much faster, and it's fascinating to watch the scout "bee flow" ebb and . . . flow :D just before the quorum gets established. Then they all disappear for ~20 minutes and return in a giant cloud.

If I get some free time I might try monkeying around in iMovie to see if I can do a timelapse.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,264 Posts
The description doesn't mention an interface of some type. How does that one interface with your data logger, and what are you using for logging ? As I hunt for a replacement scale I find that prices seem to double when the description mentions some form of computer interface available.
I cut off the screen and connected the scale to a high resolution A2D. The A2D is then connected to a data logger. It is very much a one off custom system right now. My system is loosely based off of this one

https://makezine.com/projects/bees-sensors-monitor-hive-health/
 
1 - 20 of 101 Posts
Top