Only one hen laying and eating crumbles- oyster shell


5 Years
May 27, 2014
Wasn't sure how to word this. I have 7 hens - only one has started laying. All are fed grower crumbles. I read somewhere that it is okay to keep them all on crumbles and then when one starts to lay to put out oyster shell. My understanding is that only the one who is laying will eat the oyster shell

Is that true? I know giving calcium when not laying can hurt the kidneys.
Last edited:


Bambrook Bantams
6 Years
Apr 15, 2013
Forrest Beach, FNQ, Australia
Hey there Buddy2biddies

Yep, that is correct. You can continue to feed the grower crumbles and put some oyster shell in a separate dish. The hen(s) who are laying will peck at the oyster shell if they need it and the ones who are not laying yet will ignore it.

When they are all laying, you can switch to a layer feed. Even on the layer feed, I still have oyster shell available should they need it. I find they will usually have a couple of pecks at it before going up to the roost for the night.

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