Oyster shell vs. ground egg shell

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by JoyAnna, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. JoyAnna

    JoyAnna Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2012
    Maple Falls, Washington
    I have been grinding up egg shell and feeding back to my two ducks instead of buying oyster shell. The eggs produced so far have VERY strong shells, even hard to crack open. Is there any problem with this practice?
  2. oldrooster

    oldrooster One Crazy Nut

    Uh yea, think of it this way if you eat something you do not absorb 100% of the nutrients, so your ducks are not getting 100% of the calcium back some is lost in digestion, plus bones and other body parts need calcium so some is leached there instead of going to the egg production.....
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I've done it with my chickens and my few ducks for years. I don't even grind it up, I just toss the cracked shell pieces in the run and let them have at it.

    Occasionally I'll start getting a soft shelled egg, then I toss in some oyster shell to boost the overall calcium again. I see the point of oldrooster, you can't recycle the same calcium forever, but it can work for quite a while! Just go by what your birds are telling you.
  4. Crafty-Duck

    Crafty-Duck Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 27, 2012
    Lucky Duck Pond
    I offer both!
  5. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    There is nothing wrong with this.

    I also offer both to my chickens, ducks and geese. I rinse, dry and crush my egg shells, just to make sure they don't look like eggs. I also offer oyster shell in case the ducks or geese didn't want to eat the egg shell. I got 50 lbs for about $8 I think.

    If your eggs are hard to crack then they are certainly getting enough calcium. In winter, they also may lay thicker shelled eggs.

    Alot depends on their diet and if they forage. If they eat alot of bugs, especially hard shelled ones like beetles, then they may be getting enough calcium.
  6. JoyAnna

    JoyAnna Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2012
    Maple Falls, Washington
    Thanks for the replys. I am feeding them organic, soy free, and GMO free layer feed w/16 to 18 calcium content. They free range part of every day and in the evening I give them a treat (to help train them to pen up at night). These threats are vegetables, sometimes cooked potatoes, or whatever I can come up with. They were rescued from very poor living conditions, so I have worked at giving them the best quality nutrition I can afford. They have responded so well, have tamed down, have grown since they came in early August, and both began to lay but now there is only one egg per day. They each have gone through molting, so I expect I will return to 2 eggs per day come spring. It's quite chilly now up her in the PNW.

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