Detection of Varroa mites from honey bee hives by smart technology Var-Gor: a hive monitoring and image processing device


Abstract: The major honey bee parasite Varroa destructor reduces hive vitality and honey yields by preventing growth of heathy bees and causes drastic loss in apiculture. Therefore, mite infestation in honey bee needs to be constantly controlled by beekeepers. To minimize this loss, a system called Var-Gor has been developed with the aim of controlling Varroa mite infestation before/just after entering the hive instead of the late period. Var-Gor is a hive entrance attachable device box consist of bee passage tunnels (width: 25 mm, height: 15 mm, and depth: 50 mm), autofocus detection camera combined with interface (process sensor: IV-HG10) and supportive image capturing equipment. Energy requirement of the device was provided by sustainable and eco-friendly solar panels and power batteries placed close to hives. Additionally, a Wi-Fi-like network connection and easy to use mobile application software was designed for the early warning of the beekeepers in case of Varroa destructor infestation. All the systems were designed compatible with cloud storage and 5G smart technology developments. Var-Gor was trained with 60% Varroa mite containing honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) and 40% not containing ones. The matching range of shapes to regular honey bee and Varroa mite was 70%. Following the training system, it was able to detect existing Varroa mites with the highest accuracy within the trained samples. Even though the system requires further training based on the location and color of the mite on bee, it is a promising smart technology device for early detection of the Varroa mites.

Keywords: Apiculture, early detection, smart technology, Varroa destructor

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