Oyster Shell Effects on Meat Birds

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Barnyard Dawg, Jan 25, 2008.

  1. Barnyard Dawg

    Barnyard Dawg Songster

    Feb 7, 2007
    Northern California
    When we feed oyster shell to chickens it makes for a harder egg shell, and I assume stronger bones but how would this affect the meat could it make it tougher especially the muscle meat like the legs? So if your going to consume your chickens is it better to give less than to much if that is possible. Your thoughts please.
  2. Dodgegal79

    Dodgegal79 Songster

    Dec 1, 2007
    Princeton BC Canada
    I wouldn't feed them oyster shell if they aren't laying. Its not good for them and can cause them to die. I think I had some ducks die from too much calcium. they shoulkd be getting enough in their food.
  3. greyfields

    greyfields Crowing

    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    It's generally believed that giving oyster shell to growing chicks will cause kidney failure. With that said, it seems most the leg problems cornish crosses have can be traced to inadeqate calcium and phosphorus uptake. I can't imagine it would hurt to sprinkle some bone meal or oyster shell over their food to give them a bump in nutrition.
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Yep, too much can be bad for them. Everything in moderation and it's just laying hens often need it because they can go though the calcium reserves in their own bones very quickly when laying. Since meat birds only live for 8 or so weeks, the cumulative effects of organ failure due to excess calcium is unlikely to appear in such a short amount of time.

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