Hey again everyone,
So it looks like we're entering a dearth period in my area of Western NY and I've observed the bees, opened up the hives (2) and have seen VERY little pollen collection going on in either hive. It doesn't look like they're building any new comb or putting away new nectar stores compared to the previous inspection. I also just requeened both hives last Wednesday since both hives appeared to be queenless (no evidence of eggs or brood anywhere).
Last year, there seemed to be a nectar/pollen dearth from July up until late August when the goldenrod kicked into high gear. If when I reinspect the hives this Friday (earliest I can do it) and see evidence of queen activity, I want to make every effort to keep things going strong until the goldenrod starts.
Should I put a feeder on each hive? I have a screened bucket feeder and a hive top feeder. I don't have a faith in the bucket, since the screened plug fell out of the lid earlier in June when I tried to remove it to refill it while attempting to feed a swarm I had just hived 2 weeks earlier (it was intact after the first refill). As for the hive top feeder, how do I encourage/entice the bees to use it? I ask this because when we used one 8 years ago, it was a bust.