Egg Shells as Calcium Supplement

TammyTX

Crowing
10 Years
Feb 16, 2009
2,064
147
258
Texas
So I fed my chickens back about six dozen eggs last weekend. I whirled them in the Vita Mix and what was left behind was about 4 cups of very pretty eggshell sand. I separated it out, baked it in the oven and then let it sit for a couple of days to make sure it was all dry. The shells by the way were not ground like flour, more like small "flecks".

Yesterday I went out and put the shells out in the oyster shell holder and today....they were ALL gone. They ate all four cups??? Not only that but they had scratched around the ground getting every piece that dropped. They oyster shell lasts for a few weeks.

Why would the chickens eat so much ground up egg shell in less than 24 hours? They are yard birds and they have a large 50x50 yard for 43 birds.

Anyone anticipate I'll have problems??
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
27,862
22,030
907
Southeast Louisiana
It was most likely just something new and they liked the flavor. Let the quality of the egg shells they produce tell you if they need more calcium. Since you sound like you are giving them oyster shell free choice, unless you see an actual problem with the egg shells they are producing, you have no problems.
 

rainbowgardens

Songster
11 Years
Nov 19, 2008
303
5
131
Central Virginia
I throw all of my eggshells into the compost and as a result, my vegetable garden beds have bits of shell mixed into the soil.

I noticed for the past few weeks, as I have allowed the hens in the garden, they have been scratching around in them and eating all of the bits they can find. I guess I need to find another source of calcium for the garden.

They have the oyster shell in the coop but they still love the egg shells.
 

speckledhen

Intentional Solitude
Premium Feather Member
14 Years
Feb 3, 2007
79,285
14,014
1,236
Blue Ridge Mtns. of North Georgia
They won't even recognize ground up shells as their own eggs, so it won't start them on an egg-eating binge. I've baked the shells to make them dry and brittle then crushed them up and put them in a rabbit feeder. Done it for years. No egg-eaters at all here.
 

Tweeza

Songster
11 Years
Aug 17, 2008
335
1
132
New England
I've had my chickens for a year now. I just let the egg shells dry and crush them up. I've not had any egg eater. They love their shells and ignore the oyster shell. The hens egg shell's are tough as nails. I dropped one in the yard (no grass) and it literally bounced, rolled, and came to rest without a crack! I was shocked!!
 

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