They are easy to nest. Just use a 5 gallon bucket with sand/soil mixture. I say mixture of the two because I've had 2 females that died when their nest collapsed on them while digging in the past 7 years. This was an all sand base and heavier. I've found the trick (if there is one) to getting them to nest is having the substrate be pretty moist. Just place a 60 watt spot bulb over the top of it, and leave them in for the entire day. If they don't use it, take them out for a day to recover, and then try again the next. You can usually tell they are ready to lay because the eggs are palpable pretty easily. I don't notice much restless behavior with this species prior to laying, and they generally lay for me between 2 weeks and 1 month after breeding.
This species has a reputation for dropping eggs, and in my earlier years of breeding them, I thought this was normal. In the past 2 years, I've only had maybe one girl do this. It is not any more normal than with any other species. You just need to be persistent. If she does drop them though, don't worry, they can hatch just fine as long as they aren't broken/dehydrated beyond recovery.
Good luck! You'll love lats. They are a great species.
Forgot to add incubation...30 grams vermiculite, 20 grams of water. 70F for 7-15 months. The average is 8-10 though. Using a LLL or think geek "incubator" works wonders as long as it is not placed in a room with wild temp. swings.
Ive used both methods Jim, and can tell you that diapause is unreliable and often creates weak babies and hatching rates as low as 10%. This is not every time, but many times. Your best bet is constant 68-70F. It's reliable and works. Don't ask me why the older literature makes it seem like diapause is necessary. That advice wasted a lot of time and eggs for me when I first started working with them.
Great photos! I have placed a temporary small bin inside her enclosure.... no sign of use yet and she is still chubby & a little bumpy. I leave to work out of town in the morning and intend to try the larger more isolated bucket if she hasn't laid by the time I return sunday. The temporary bin is 6"x9" with maybe 4 inches of sand... deep enough? I cant wait to try out your recipe! lol Cheers!
By this point a response is probably not as important. It's Sunday already! I'm sorry for the late reply. 4" would probably suffice, but she'll dig deeper if you let her. I haven't measure the depth of the sand in my laying buckets, but it's probably 8-10" and they dig straight to the bottom in many cases, or just short of it. Keep me posted