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Interference-Free Identification of Honey Bees at the Hive Entrance Based on Infrared Illumination and Data Matrix Markers

Gunther H. Bohn1, Jürgen Tautz2, Hartmut Vierle3, Konrad Öchsner3, Gerhard Vonend3, Marius Schlereth1, and Thomas Depner1
1. University of Applied Sciences Würzburg-Schweinfurt, Schweinfurt, Germany
2. HOBOS, Julius-Maximilians-University Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany
3. Julius-Maximilians-University Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany

Abstract—In this paper, we describe a method for detecting and identifying honey bees under infrared light using data matrix code markers, specifically the ECC200 code. The identification of the bees allows to automatically monitor the individual departure and entry behavior of the honey bees. Material costs per stainless steel platelet as marker are estimated at 0.5Ct. Therefore the process is suitable for marking a large number of individual bees. The bees are individually provided with a data matrix code. During the motion of the bees from the center to the hive entrance, the marker is read using an infrared-sensitive camera and a corresponding infrared light source. As bees do not see infrared light, the monitoring is interference-free and does not affect the behavior of the bees. On live bees, the procedure was successfully tested. The results show that it is possible to reliably identify bees under infrared light and read the associated code.

Index Terms—image processing, honeybee, behavioral science, data matrix code, decoding

Cite: Gunther H. Bohn, Jürgen Tautz, Hartmut Vierle, Konrad Öchsner, Gerhard Vonend, Marius Schlereth, and Thomas Depner, "Interference-Free Identification of Honey Bees at the Hive Entrance Based on Infrared Illumination and Data Matrix Markers," Journal of Image and Graphics, Vol. 8, No. 4, pp. 93-97, December 2020. doi: 10.18178/joig.8.4.93-97

Copyright © 2020 by the authors. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0), which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided that the article is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.