tweeting honeybees country beehive liveBristol is at it again with another world first, but this time its the city’s honeybees who are getting involved! Through the innovative use of technology and social media, interactive science centre At-Bristol has created the first live tweeting honeybees in a joint initiative with BeeBristol and scientists from the University of Bristol that aims to engage people with the lives of the bees.

“We hope that everyone will enjoy following the lives of our bees and learning more about how city life effects them”

 

The two hives, one based in the countryside (@countrybeehive) in Langford and another in the city (@citybeehive) at the At-Bristol centre, can be viewed and compared 24/7 at Live from the Hive. As well as viewing these unique honeybees, you can view live data and stats from the hives including the number of bees, temperature and air quality and, of course, the ‘thoughts’ of the bees themselves in their respective Twitter streams – with the bees tweets based on real-time analysis of the data collected.

 

 

Chris Dunford, At-Bristol’s Sustainability Engagement Manager says: “We are delighted to be launching ‘Live from the Hive!’ We are committed to becoming the most sustainable science centre in the UK, and part of that work involves supporting pollinators, so we are very proud to use our hive in academic research.

We hope that everyone will enjoy following the lives of our bees and learning more about how city life affects them.”

City life for honeybees

city beehive live tweeting honeybeesAs well as getting people involved in the life of bees, the project is part of scientific research looking at the impact of city living on honeybee colonies to decipher whether human activity (e.g. pollution) has an effect on bee behaviour.

“This is an exciting opportunity for us to share science with the public as it happens”

 

It is predicted that human activity will have an effect on the city bees as a result of 7-day cycles in air-quality, due to pollution caused by Monday to Friday commuter traffic.

Dr Dominic Clarke, Post-Doctoral Research Associate in Sensory Biophysics at the University of Bristol adds: “This is an exciting opportunity for us to share science with the public as it happens. Maybe someone out there will spot something interesting in our data before we do!”

Getting bee-sy

You can get involved with the project by visiting At-Bristol’s new exhibit in its indoor greenhouse. The exhibit enables visitors to compare the behaviour of the two bee colonies in real-time. Live from the Hive is also accessible online, so no one need miss out!

Live from the hive: Check out this live shot of the city bees in action!

Live images from inside At-Bristol’s beehive are also being featured on the BBCs Springwatch TV programmewhich runs from 30 May for three weeks.

You can stay in touch with these fantastic tweeting honeybees and their live data by checking out Live from the Hive, or following the bees on Twitter: @citybeehive and @countrybeehive. You can also stay up-to-date with current and future exhibitions at the At-Bristol science centre by following them on Twitter: @AtBristol.

Alice Whale