The practice of beekeeping has been existing since ancient times, and nowadays it is a profitable business in different corners of the world. However, beekeepers have more headaches than just reaping the honey, as thefts of beehives are becoming a routine thing. Teltonika Mobility has come up with a solution to protect bees.
The beekeeping business can bring success for several reasons. First, the owners make a huge fortune by selling honey and related products. As per Statista, the global honey market was valued at about seven billion U.S. dollars in 2019 and is projected to reach over 11 billion U.S. dollars by 2027.
Secondly, bees are the main pollinators of plants that are produced into food. Hundreds of thousands of owners across the globe utilize bee farms for the purpose of crop pollination. According to the research of Gallai., insect pollination provided EUR 153 billion, representing 9.5% of the total economic value of agricultural production used directly for human food.
In the last decade, however, the bee population has been sharply declining due to the ravages of deadly mites, diseases and toxic pesticides. That caused the increase in the price of remaining bees and pollination. For example, the cost of a hive for pollination has shot up, from just $35 a few years ago to $200, and upwards now.
With bees becoming a premium asset, more and more reports have been coming up about thefts of beehives. One of the countries suffering most from beehives theft is France that has seen a rise in them. For example, to compare with January-May in 2020 and the same period in 2021, there was a 50% increase of thefts with severe losses for French farmers. A beekeeper in Occitanie had 32 of his hives stolen and that amounted to the damage of €12,000 that comprised the cost of hives and honey to be harvested. Around the same time, another beekeeper in the region lost 70 hives at once which resulted in even more devastating losses.
Furthermore, beehive theft is a recurring problem in the USA where bees are used to pollinate great territories of almond orchards. The crimes have become so regular that police officers in California now specialize in hive crime. However, the beekeepers suffer badly from the crimes. One owner of Pollination farm has lost 92 hives with the theft costing him $44,000.
With the demand for honeybees and pollination rising, the crime rate is not expected to slow down. This should be a signal for beekeepers to come up with smart plans to secure their assets. How to achieve it? GPS tracking can serve as an alternative way to manual and ineffective ways of protecting the hives and allows real-time monitoring with additional perks. That‘s where Teltonika Mobility comes into the light.
Teltonika Mobility solution is based around the bestseller ASSET TRACKEReasy (TAT100). How does it work? The tracker can be mounted inside the frame of a hive or under the hive. With the help of GPS positioning installed in the device, any hive movement detection would send an alarm to the online system, thus a thief may be caught in a matter of time. Similarly, empowered by the magnetic sensor, an immediate warning would be delivered to the owner in case of unauthorized removal of the frame, honeycomb other part of the hive.
Hives should also be protected from drastic temperature changes that can kill the bee colony living inside. Thus, additional ELA temperature and humidity sensors may be installed and monitor the situation in real-time. If there is a sudden drop or increase in temperature, the beekeeper would receive a notification and could react immediately.