A few weeks back I did a walkaway split from my hive to a 5 frame nuc. Everything appeared to be well. using the common time ranges found online I made up a schedule and did periodic checks.
I checked and verified that I had 8 queen cells,
later checked and they were all sealed
checked a day before they were "supposed" to emerge, and found several cells opened, a few days later all had been opened and the hive was working on chewing down the cells.
checked a week later, and I'll be darned if I can find a queen. checked two days in a row, each frame pulled out and gone over closely. Looked around the nuc, didn't see any dead queens on the ground.
Any idea what may have happened? I have plenty of workers, nurses and drones in it. As a precaution I added two more frames of eggs yesterday. I figured if theres no queen, they can try again, if there is a queen, no harm no foul.
Your timeline might be a little quick. I usually give them 28 days from the split until I look for the queen. Sometimes it's longer, sometimes there's already brood but 28 seems to work best. You did not hurt them adding eggs. It will tell you something pretty quick.
Virgins can be hard to see. Even after mating they are smallish for a while. I have had it take almost 2 weeks for signs that she is back and laying. A week is none too long. I usually figure on a month, from start to finish, as a round number, as I can only estimate when the cell was started, and when she starts laying. Giving them a frame of brood is always a good safety measure, and this time of year I think the added brood will be needed for your winter build up.
And it is best to leave colonies with young queen alone for a while after you see signs of mated queen e.g. eggs, young brood. Couple of reasons:
* Young queens are fragile and you can kill them easily. I have done it more than once!
* Undisturbed young queens becomes better laying queens.
You don't HAVE to find the queen! The only reason for checking sign of queen is to check for a failed split. I generally news paper combine the failed split with a weak hive rather than giving them a second chance.