Dallas man invents technology in hopes of helping honey bees

A Dallas businessman is hoping a new way to track honey bees will help boost the insect's dwindling population.

At the end of the day, when everyone takes the elevator down, Oren Salomon dresses in a beekeeper suit and takes the elevator up with his co-worker Geoffrey Byers.

"There's not many people who are willing to carry a 50-pound box of bees up a sketchy ladder to put them on the roof, so he's earned his keep," Salomon said.

Walking along a tight rope of a roof line 18 floors above the street, News 8 joined the men to check on their bees four weeks ago.

"The wind is really affecting our process here," Salomon said at the time. "The hives are dying 30 to 50 percent each year."

Hives are dying, and never has that hit home for Oren more than today.

"Are they all gone? Our bees are gone."

The men were stunned.

"Well this is tragic. We have a bad story here."

Salomon wants to develop a way to track what happens in a hive. His passion is to save the honey bee. Turns out the technology Salomon is developing would actually have seen the problem four weeks ago coming.

"The job of the beekeepers in basically make sure nothing goes wrong and that their environment is hospitable to them."

The new tracking technology is called Project Pollinate. Oren has already installed his hive tracker.

"We're creating sensors that allow us to passively observe what's happening in the hive instead of actively disturbing the bees to find out for ourselves," he says.

The first-ever computer readings he's recorded assures him that his hive is thriving.

"Each of these is a bee sized gate, like that one that just went in, only one can get in at a time and basically there's a light sensor here in the front and one a little further in."

It's literally tracking a beehive of activity.

Even though there are 40,000 bees in this hive, Oren feels an attachment to each one.

"Bees are doing great. We've checked up on the equipment, the equipment is doing good," he says.

It takes the sting out of tiptoeing around rooftops and having to wear a suit to work.

Go here for more information on how to help the honey bee population.


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