I have some questions about budgie breeding. I'm new to this forum but I've had budgies for awhile. I'd like to just give some background info before I start asking questions.
I have 4 budgies - 2 males and 2 females. I've had the males for well over a year, one of them (a blue English/native mix) is over 2 years. The other male is native green. Of the females, one is over a year and is white colour (not albino) and the other is a light-wing, bright green opaline (she is just over a year).
All 4 are somewhat bonded to each other. The blue and the white female are especially close, so I used them as a mate pair last year. The female laid a clutch of infertile eggs last year, and it was her first time. The blue male is very devoted to the female but has some problems when it comes to actually mounting the female. He seems to not quite get what he's meant to do - he even took up the female mating pose once (crouched down bum up in the air while the female desperately tried to get him to mount her).
They are all in breeding condition, all healthy and have been on breeding diet for around 3months prior to the nest box being put in each cage. The nest box was put in 17 days ago. So far, both females immediately took the the nest boxes and spend most of their time in them. There are no eggs yet, however. The white female seemed to exhibit signs off egg bum, but did lay, so I took her to the avian vet who told me there was no egg but she was otherwise healthy. I tried to ask why she had the bulge if there was no egg but I didn't get an answer. I have examined her today and there seems to clearly be an egg in there (her abdomen is very swollen and droops down, her vent in enlarged and when I stroke the abdomen, I can feel a hard egg-sized lump).
The other pair have no signs of eggs yet but they seem very attached - they sleep cuddled up next to each other right outside the nest box entrance and the male often feeds the female. (however, it's this opalines first time breeding)
Now to my questions.
Why does the blue male seem so oblivious to mating?
How can I help the females lay their eggs easily and safely? (the white female had to be induced by the vet last time because she wouldn't lay. She wasn't egg bound, she just didn't lay and the vet didn't know if she would do it on her own. She had help with the first egg but laid every other one successfully on her own afterwards. She laid 5 eggs total.)
How long should I wait before trying new pairs of they aren't successful?
Is there anything else I can do to help stimulate successful and safe breeding?
Diet - was on peckish breeder pellets but now on vetafarm budgie crumble.
Get fresh veggies everyday
Vet told me to put a supplement in their water, so they have that everyday as well.
They have a shower every other day, and sit in the warm, humid air for a bit to relax. (I can't give them flight exercise in their room because they tend to fiddle with the nest boxes and the females get tetchy)
Please any advice is welcome!!