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Crushed oyster shell

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Do feed stores normally carry this? If so what size does it come in, whats the use rate for; say 10 birds? A local restaurant will likely give me a tonnage of shells, can I use them and grind/pulverize them up; if so how fine does it need to be?
John

.....it all rolls into one; ...and nothing comes for free.....
1-BR, 2-BSL, 2-BO, 3-BA...Yellow Lab Emily, 3 male cats,and  a crazy Cockatiel
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.....it all rolls into one; ...and nothing comes for free.....
1-BR, 2-BSL, 2-BO, 3-BA...Yellow Lab Emily, 3 male cats,and  a crazy Cockatiel
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post #2 of 10

I used to buy it at the feedstore a couple of pounds at a time.  They would repackage it from the 50# bags into ziplock bags and sell a couple of pounds for a couple of bucks.  It's hard to say what they will consume.  They eat it as they need it.  You may not go through any for a few months and then all at once they are munching through it.

You can throw shells in a canvas bag and smash them with a hammer.  The ones I used to get from the feed store were pretty course, almost like pea gravel.  If you smash them to M&M size or a even a bit larger it will do.

post #3 of 10

An easy way to crush them is put them in a burlap bag and drive your car over then a few times

post #4 of 10

hello smile

My feed store keeps the oyster shell in a scoop section so you get the amount you like. I think its around 50 cents a pound and they have the bags for us to fill ourselves.

Good luck!!

Love many trust few... always paddle your own canoe!
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Love many trust few... always paddle your own canoe!
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post #5 of 10

I actually have not purchased oyster shell, as I reuse egg shells instead.  I started saving them up months before I had any laying hens.  After cleaning out the egg, I put the shells on a cookie sheet.  Whenever I use the oven, after I've turned it off, I put the cookie sheet in the oven so that the residual heat dries them out without burning them.  Once dry, I put them in a glass jar and use a heavy ice-cream scoop to crush them.  (I used to use the food processor but then someone mentioned that the plastic bowl of the food processor would be torn up by the egg shells so that's when I started using a glass jar).  I keep crushing until each piece is about 1/4" across, then store them until needed.  When my eldest hen started showing signs of maturity, I took a yogurt container outside and nailed it to a deck post, then filled it with the crushed egg shells.  I've watched my hen go to it to eat and have even had to refill it once.

I did have some fear that this would teach her to eat her own eggs but so far that has not been the case.  I'm hoping that by "cooking" them and crushing them, they look different enough from the eggs she lays that it won't occur to her.  She started laying two days after Christmas and so far has not touched her own eggs. 

I know oyster shell is not a huge expense but this way it is one less thing to have to buy and I am able to reuse something I was going to be throwing away otherwise.

Enjoying my 10-acres in the country with 50+ chickens, turkeys and muscovy ducks!  Blog is here.

 

Read about my fox attack here

A fox attack survival story

My hoop house

Should I add supplemental heat?

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Enjoying my 10-acres in the country with 50+ chickens, turkeys and muscovy ducks!  Blog is here.

 

Read about my fox attack here

A fox attack survival story

My hoop house

Should I add supplemental heat?

Reply
post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by FortWorthChicks 

hello smile

My feed store keeps the oyster shell in a scoop section so you get the amount you like. I think its around 50 cents a pound and they have the bags for us to fill ourselves.

Good luck!!


Sounds like a nice feed store to have in your area!  Wish I had one that accomadating.  I put my coarse stuff in a nylon feed sack or burlap bag and crush further with a hammer.

The best sermons are lived, not preached!
Keep smiling,
Dave
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The best sermons are lived, not preached!
Keep smiling,
Dave
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post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by HEChicken 

I actually have not purchased oyster shell, as I reuse egg shells instead.  I started saving them up months before I had any laying hens.  After cleaning out the egg, I put the shells on a cookie sheet.  Whenever I use the oven, after I've turned it off, I put the cookie sheet in the oven so that the residual heat dries them out without burning them.  Once dry, I put them in a glass jar and use a heavy ice-cream scoop to crush them.  (I used to use the food processor but then someone mentioned that the plastic bowl of the food processor would be torn up by the egg shells so that's when I started using a glass jar).  I keep crushing until each piece is about 1/4" across, then store them until needed.  When my eldest hen started showing signs of maturity, I took a yogurt container outside and nailed it to a deck post, then filled it with the crushed egg shells.  I've watched my hen go to it to eat and have even had to refill it once.

I did have some fear that this would teach her to eat her own eggs but so far that has not been the case.  I'm hoping that by "cooking" them and crushing them, they look different enough from the eggs she lays that it won't occur to her.  She started laying two days after Christmas and so far has not touched her own eggs. 

I know oyster shell is not a huge expense but this way it is one less thing to have to buy and I am able to reuse something I was going to be throwing away otherwise.


My grandmother always did exactly what you do, and none of her hens ate eggs. 

So I think they do not recognize the shells as eggs when you dry and crush them.

Catherine

4 Italian Greyhounds: Penny, Huckleberry, Becky, and Tina; 1 Scottish Deerhound:  Nancy; 2 Kitties: KoKo and Katie, Chickens, mostly R.I. Reds; 7 Peafowl; One husband; 3 adult children, (son just back from Iraq); and 2 Granddaughters. 
West Virginia
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4 Italian Greyhounds: Penny, Huckleberry, Becky, and Tina; 1 Scottish Deerhound:  Nancy; 2 Kitties: KoKo and Katie, Chickens, mostly R.I. Reds; 7 Peafowl; One husband; 3 adult children, (son just back from Iraq); and 2 Granddaughters. 
West Virginia
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post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by jscnlc 

Do feed stores normally carry this? If so what size does it come in, whats the use rate for; say 10 birds? A local restaurant will likely give me a tonnage of shells, can I use them and grind/pulverize them up; if so how fine does it need to be?
John


My feed store carries it in a 2.5 lb bag. It's only a couple bucks. It's crushed a little finer than instant oatmeal. I have only gone through 2 bags(5 lbs) in 6 years. I usually have about 4 hens.

Imp

 

 

If all the beasts were gone, men would die from a great loneliness of spirit,

for whatever happens to the beasts also happens to the man.

All things are connected.
Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of the Earth.

 

       ― Chief Seattle

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If all the beasts were gone, men would die from a great loneliness of spirit,

for whatever happens to the beasts also happens to the man.

All things are connected.
Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of the Earth.

 

       ― Chief Seattle

Reply
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by HEChicken 

I actually have not purchased oyster shell, as I reuse egg shells instead.  I started saving them up months before I had any laying hens.  After cleaning out the egg, I put the shells on a cookie sheet.  Whenever I use the oven, after I've turned it off, I put the cookie sheet in the oven so that the residual heat dries them out without burning them.  Once dry, I put them in a glass jar and use a heavy ice-cream scoop to crush them.  (I used to use the food processor but then someone mentioned that the plastic bowl of the food processor would be torn up by the egg shells so that's when I started using a glass jar).  I keep crushing until each piece is about 1/4" across, then store them until needed.  When my eldest hen started showing signs of maturity, I took a yogurt container outside and nailed it to a deck post, then filled it with the crushed egg shells.  I've watched my hen go to it to eat and have even had to refill it once.

I did have some fear that this would teach her to eat her own eggs but so far that has not been the case.  I'm hoping that by "cooking" them and crushing them, they look different enough from the eggs she lays that it won't occur to her.  She started laying two days after Christmas and so far has not touched her own eggs. 

I know oyster shell is not a huge expense but this way it is one less thing to have to buy and I am able to reuse something I was going to be throwing away otherwise.


I just let them air dry in kitchen and then when I have enough for the trouble, i take them to the basement where i keep a grain grinder and process them there.  I grind some to powder consistency for adding to our oatmeal, meatloaf, casseroles, etc.  There is more in them than calcium.  The many trace minerals from the ground they are on is in their shells too.  wink

NECESSITY MAY BE THE MOTHER OF INVENTION, BUT GOD IS THE FATHER OF ALL GOOD THINGS.    (G. Simpkins)
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NECESSITY MAY BE THE MOTHER OF INVENTION, BUT GOD IS THE FATHER OF ALL GOOD THINGS.    (G. Simpkins)
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post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by gsim 
Quote:
Originally Posted by HEChicken 

I actually have not purchased oyster shell, as I reuse egg shells instead.  I started saving them up months before I had any laying hens.  After cleaning out the egg, I put the shells on a cookie sheet.  Whenever I use the oven, after I've turned it off, I put the cookie sheet in the oven so that the residual heat dries them out without burning them.  Once dry, I put them in a glass jar and use a heavy ice-cream scoop to crush them.  (I used to use the food processor but then someone mentioned that the plastic bowl of the food processor would be torn up by the egg shells so that's when I started using a glass jar).  I keep crushing until each piece is about 1/4" across, then store them until needed.  When my eldest hen started showing signs of maturity, I took a yogurt container outside and nailed it to a deck post, then filled it with the crushed egg shells.  I've watched my hen go to it to eat and have even had to refill it once.

I did have some fear that this would teach her to eat her own eggs but so far that has not been the case.  I'm hoping that by "cooking" them and crushing them, they look different enough from the eggs she lays that it won't occur to her.  She started laying two days after Christmas and so far has not touched her own eggs. 

I know oyster shell is not a huge expense but this way it is one less thing to have to buy and I am able to reuse something I was going to be throwing away otherwise.


I just let them air dry in kitchen and then when I have enough for the trouble, i take them to the basement where i keep a grain grinder and process them there.  I grind some to powder consistency for adding to our oatmeal, meatloaf, casseroles, etc.  There is more in them than calcium.  The many trace minerals from the ground they are on is in their shells too.  wink


Well, gosh.  What a good idea.

Catherine

4 Italian Greyhounds: Penny, Huckleberry, Becky, and Tina; 1 Scottish Deerhound:  Nancy; 2 Kitties: KoKo and Katie, Chickens, mostly R.I. Reds; 7 Peafowl; One husband; 3 adult children, (son just back from Iraq); and 2 Granddaughters. 
West Virginia
Reply
4 Italian Greyhounds: Penny, Huckleberry, Becky, and Tina; 1 Scottish Deerhound:  Nancy; 2 Kitties: KoKo and Katie, Chickens, mostly R.I. Reds; 7 Peafowl; One husband; 3 adult children, (son just back from Iraq); and 2 Granddaughters. 
West Virginia
Reply
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