NEW GOALS & PERKS ANNOUNCED:
We're trying to solve the colony collapse issue by making it easier than ever to keep bees. Contribute now to become a beekeeper or support our research!
More Information: What is Colony Collapse Disorder?
We're a team of ecologists, beekeepers, makers, engineers, and open source advocates who believe that citizens, rather than governments or corporations, can solve this problem by taking action together. Our team is based in Denver, Barcelona, and Brussels.
We've designed two downloadable, printable beehives: the Colorado Top Bar, and the Barcelona Warré. These hives aim to prioritise bee colony health, make beekeeping more accessible, and will ultimately allow you to log and study the health of your colony.
Your contribution will help us develop sensors to enhance our hives, connecting them to the Internet to log data about what is causing the bees to disappear around the world. This data can be used to study colony health, build hard evidence against the causes of the problem, and generate policy change and informed solutions moving forward.
A Word About the Open Source Ethic and Beekeeping
Beekeepers have a long history of sharing ideas, skills, honey and collaborating. The Warré hive design itself was meant to be the "people's hive", and we are definitely not the first or only one's to walk this path. We want to thank those that came before us, that help us now, and that will come in the future. Please check out these other great open source beehive monitoring projects:
- Intelligent Beehives
- Open Energy Monitor
- Honey Bee Counter
- Luke Aldridge Rice
- Intelligent Beehives at Yale
If you want to add to this list, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Colorado Top Bar
Update: the Colorado Top Bar was recently printed in New Zealand! (Video)
The Barcelona Warré
Version 1.0 Shown - Version 2.0 Requires No Screws Or Glues - Flat Pack!
Update: the Warre v2.0 was made by our friends in France today! Photos
The Smart Citizen Kit
The Online Platform
We will leverage the fruits of this campaign to develop a bee monitoring sensor package based on the Smart Citizen Kit.
The first layer is a piece of hardware comprised by two printed-circuit boards: an interchangeable daughterboard or shield, and an arduino-compatible data-processing board. It carries sensors that measure air composition (CO and NO2), temperature, light intensity, sound levels, and humidity. Once it’s set up, the ambient board is able to stream data measured by the sensors over Wi-Fi using the FCC-certified, wireless module on the data-processing board. The online component of the Smart Citizen Kit is used for logging and visualizing the data measured by the hardware.
- Proceeds from this campaign will be used to develop a robust, field ready, open source sensor package for beekeeper's throughout the world.
- Our team has more than three years of experience field testing sensors in beehives.
- We are integrating with an existing open source, environmental-monitoring solution that is being used throughout the world - the Smart Citizen platform developed by Fab Lab Barcelona.
- We are a 100% open source project (CC BY-SA 3.0), meaning you are even free to manufacture OSBH technology locally and start your own business!
- The Colorado Top Bar and Barcelona Warré hives can both be routed with high-end CNC machinery in less than forty minutes.
- We've established manufacturing and shipping pipelines to get your hives to you in April, 2014.
- All of our hives are made with CARB Phase 2 wood, the strictest eco-plywood certification in the United States.
"In October 2006, some beekeepers began reporting losses of 30-90 percent of their hives. While colony losses are not unexpected, especially over the winter, this magnitude of losses was unusually high.
The main symptom of CCD is very low or no adult honey bees present in the hive but with a live queen and no dead honey bee bodies present. Often there is still honey in the hive, and immature bees (brood) are present. Varroa mites, a virus-transmitting parasite of honey bees, have frequently been found in hives hit by CCD."
"Since 2006 an estimated 10 million beehives worth about $200 each have been lost, costing beekeepers some $2 billion. There are now 2.5 million honeybee colonies in the U.S., down from 6 million 60 years ago. And if CCD continues, the consequences for the agricultural economy — and even for our ability to feed ourselves — could be dire."
"If you're a professional beekeeper or hobbyist, and handy with electronics, you get a double-whammy: a free design for a high-tech beehive that can monitor your bees' environment, and a chance to contribute to citizen science."
- Popular Science
"Farmers are going to need to rebuild the bee population, and that means more hives and more beekeepers. The Open Source Beehives Project is hoping to achieve that by spreading simple, low-cost hive designs to make it easy for anyone to start their own, and encouraging collaboration among designers, technologists, researchers, and bee lovers."
"Honeycomb" designed by Juan Sebastian Rickenmann from the Noun Project