The bees' continued attempts to make the beekeeper understand their behaviour still have no effect - the beekeeper still doesn't understand what on earth the bees are doing.
03/06/2017 - capped queen cell - decided to keep it in the hive and see what happens
13/08/2017 - unmarked queen found with plenty of brood; figured a successful mid-winter supersedure had taken place
31/08/2017 - spotted a marked queen in the same hive. Hive is super busy and flowing over with bees and brood. Uh oh. Ran out of time but made plan to go back into hive asap to figure out what's up.
Went through the hive again. Found both marked and unmarked queens, both appear visually normal (to my relatively inexperienced eye) with long abdomen etc.
So - somehow the queens have not battled and judging from the amount of brood and bees in the hive, which is pretty much twice as busy as the hive next to it, they both may well be laying. Confusion ensues.
Well, I had to do something so I evenly split the brood and the stores and made sure I had one queen in each side of the split. I figured this way I'd find out whether one or the other queen has simply stopped laying and is just hanging out.
I placed feeders with granulated sugar on top of each FD box and thought I might change from granulated to 1:1 sugar syrup tonight. There are a lot of bees flowing over the frames and while there's some uncapped and capped honey in the hives, it's not a lot and the weather is still quite variable - I don't want to accidentally starve the hive(s) during build up.
Now - I just placed the other half of the split next to the original location, which I presume can be risky as flying bees will return to the old hive location and possibly rob the split?
I only have one apiary (well, the inlaws' apiary is just down the road, within bee flight radius) so I can't easily move the split to a whole new location.
If anyone has great ideas as to how else to deal with this situation, I'm all ears. I didn't want to terminate either of the queens as I don't know if one or both of them are laying - it would suck to accidentally kill the only laying one.