Map image courtesy of BeeCounted Citizen Science
In earlier posts I used my Seek Thermal Camera to show the heat coming off each of my two bee hives before and after I added insulation for the winter. So far the bees have survived the winter – they’re out and about on sunny days when the temperature is at least in the mid 40’s F. But that’s about all I can tell about how the colonies are doing without opening the hives and taking a look.
So in January I upped my hive monitoring game and got a Broodminder T2 for each of my hives.
It's only ¼ inch thick and fits easily between two hive boxes or the hive box and inner cover. It records the temperature once every hour, 15 minutes, or 5 minutes. To retrieve the data, just sync it through a Bluetooth connection with your Broodminder app available for iPhone and Android.
Screenshot of downloaded data from Broodminder app
From there you upload your data to the MyBroodminder cloud. Register an account with mybroodminder.com to see your data online. I like the summary option where it graphs my temperature data along with the recorded air temperature for my location.
One month of temperature data collected with Broodminder.
The black line is the temperature inside the white hive. Blue line is the green hive temperature data. The bottom dotted pink line is the outside air temperature. On January 27 I changed the sampling rate from 1 hour to 15 minutes.
Data uploaded to the MyBroodminder cloud is public domain to be shared with researchers and other bee enthusiasts and can be accessed at https://www.beecounted.org/ .
I’m using the BeeCounted Temperature information tab to show how my bees are doing-or should be doing- without having to open my hives everyday. In return, I'm providing useful real life data to bee researchers and other like-minded bee enthusiasts.
And I just couldn’t resist comparing my Broodminder data to my Seek Thermal Camera images.
Closeup of the T2 in the White hive with the notch in inner cover and screened vent of ventilation frame
Infrared image of notch and vent
I took this infrared photo just after uploading my Broodminder data. The scale on the left reads temperatures in the 50's F just above the inner cover. The T2 recorded 60.22 F on the bee side of the cover.
I'm okay with that! I'll trust the T2 data over the camera images for measuring heat but it's still nice to see the pictures!
Links to previous posts about my backyard bees: