Researchers estimate that bees help pollinate more than a third of the food grown on the planet. Bee populations have been in sharp decline in recent years however. One company is banking on the fact that robotics and Artificial Intelligence can help; it is the Israel-based Beewise company.
In a 12-square-meter box called a Beehome, a system of robots and AI work together to play host to thousands of honeybees. Beehome is the world's first robotic beehive, and allows the hive population to be monitored. The unassuming hive looks like a white garden shed with colorful slots allowing bees to enter and exit, and solar panels on the roof that power the machine. According to Forbes, the box is fireproof, floodproof, and bars entry to harmful pests like Asian wasps.
Beewise claims that their advanced technology kills off invading insects, provides medication when needed, and provides alternate food sources for the bees as well.
Beewise says their new robotic hives have reduced colony decline to less than 8%, and they hope to continue lowering that number. They say that the traditional wooden bee box has been in use for roughly 150 years, and that the industry needs to evolve if it is going to battle the current population decline. They say Beehome isn't going to replace beekeepers, just reduce their labor, and increase their profits with higher yields, and more bees.