rockymom

Chirping
10 Years
Oct 18, 2009
5
12
79
Lockhart, Texas
I know everyone says to offer oyster shells to your chickens to make sure they get enough calcium (and avoid soft-shell eggs), but my hens will not touch it. I think it might be because the pieces are too big, so I tried to crush them, but they are pretty indestructible, so that's not working. I bought them at TSC and don't see any finer option there. They are getting free-choice organic feed, and I have been doing the bake and crush egg shells to feed back to them, as well as plain Greek yogurt.
Then I thought I would augment the yogurt with powdered calcium carbonate, but now I'm not sure that's the right form of calcium. Is calcium citrate better? I read one person's mention of crushing cuttle bone (for birds) because it is very high in calcium citrate. Any advice?
 

Farmer Connie

Gallus gallus domesticus
Feb 28, 2017
17,712
60,592
1,317
Florida Peninsula
My Coop
1163894-fa6c82b73dd5829fc6acafd6a2529984.gif


This what I do. Not saying do as I do at all.
We never have soft/brittle shells.
Our feed:
Manna Pro Egg Maker Pellets.
Distillers grains(fresh or fermented)
Small amount of eggshell/oyster shell broadcasted on the Distiller's grains.
_________________________
Broadcast the calcium supplement. They will find it.
 

Folly's place

Enabler
9 Years
Sep 13, 2011
21,331
32,411
1,036
southern Michigan
Welcome! What are you feeding, and how old, and what breeds, are your birds? If they are getting enough Ca in their diet, they won't eat the oyster shell, or eat very little of it. That's fine, they eat what they need. Adding extra Ca in a forced way will unbalance their diet, and not improve anything. Egg shells are okay to add to their oyster shell feeder in moderation.
How are their egg shells?
Mary
 

rockymom

Chirping
10 Years
Oct 18, 2009
5
12
79
Lockhart, Texas
Welcome! What are you feeding, and how old, and what breeds, are your birds? If they are getting enough Ca in their diet, they won't eat the oyster shell, or eat very little of it. That's fine, they eat what they need. Adding extra Ca in a forced way will unbalance their diet, and not improve anything. Egg shells are okay to add to their oyster shell feeder in moderation.
How are their egg shells?
Mary
 

rockymom

Chirping
10 Years
Oct 18, 2009
5
12
79
Lockhart, Texas
Thanks for your reply...I'm feeding 1/2 Purina crumbles and 1/2 Scratch and Peck - both organic. The girls are 1 1/2 years old and are Blue Gem/Blue Sapphire. I have had a couple of instances of soft shell, so I'm trying to avoid that. I know that the feed should be providing all the calcium they need, but I have had that problem, and as I say, they won't touch the oyster shell from TSC. When I had hens in Oregon, they did eat it (I'm in Texas now), so am puzzled.
 

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