Originally Posted by Pack Mom
I also have a question about oyster shell - should I be giving it to my laying hens all the time?
DE - to answer someone question from this thread - NON food grade is extremely poisons and is used in swimming pools - FOOD grade is great stuff, it is silica basically, my husband and I take it regularly, it helps with joint pains but rids your body of parasites. We feed it to our dogs and cat to rid them of worms. We also feed it to our chickens, mix some into their porridge to also rid them of any worms, we sprinkle it around and in the coop for bug control. We put some where the chickens dust so they dust with it for mites.
Flea control on pets and carpets is also done with food grade DE just be careful when sprinkling you should not breath it in, it is microscopic shards that are not good for the lungs. Plus it will clog up your vacuum filter. We prefer putting Borax (20 Mule Team) into the carpets for fleas - sprinkle on and scrub in with a broom.
DE is mixed into the grains that are stored in silos - keeps out the bugs and the moisture then when ground for feed it worms the cattle.
Want to read more about the benefits of food grade DE check out WolfCreekRanch.net website.
DE will not kill ANY internal parasites especially poultry, also I know a few cattle farm and not one of the use DE to control bugs and moisture in there grain they also use more reliable wormers.
Here is a quote from Dr. Christine King
"One of the most commonly used ingredients in these natural dewormers is diatomaceous earth or
diatomite. Diatomaceous earth is a naturally occurring, soft, chalky rock that, when crushed,
yields a fine, light-grey powder. It consists of fossilized remains of tiny hard-shelled algae called
diatoms. Owing to their high content of crystalline silica, diatomite is mildly abrasive.
In fact, that is the mechanism by which diatomite is purported to kill intestinal parasites. It is
believed that the abrasive micro-surfaces of the diatomite cut the outer membranes of the
parasites like thousands of tiny blades. But I question that premise. Industrial-grade diatomite
has a high silica content and is used as a mild abrasive. However, food-grade diatomite has a
much lower content of crystalline silica, so it is minimally abrasive.
And even if the abrasion theory is valid, then what does this stuff do to the delicate lining of
the digestive tract? While I could not find even one scientific study which validates the use of
diatomite against internal parasites in horses or other livestock, my search did turn up several
articles documenting the health risks of chronic exposure to diatomite. When inhaled, it causes
inflammation of the airways and, with chronic exposure, even some fibrosis (scarring).
Even more concerning was a study which showed that chronic oral intake of diatomite can
damage the intestinal lining, altering its absorptive properties and making it more permeable to
potentially harmful substances. So, it seems to me that the practice of using diatomaceous earth
as a daily dewormer for horses is either useless but harmless or useful but harmful, depending on
the grade of diatomite used.''