Oyster shell?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Bebo0707, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. Bebo0707

    Bebo0707 In the Brooder

    Apr 5, 2010
    When do I start to feed my chicken oyster shells ? They have tree different runs. Two are grass and one is sand. Will the sand take the place of the oyster shell? I really don't know what they need it for. Thanks
  2. ninjascrub69

    ninjascrub69 Songster

    Aug 13, 2010
    Bloomingdale, MI
    they dont "need" it, but it helps with egg production and you can start giving them oyster shells when they are about 13 weeks old (thats when i usually start mine)
  3. Nostalchic

    Nostalchic Songster

    Oyster shell is a good source of extra calcium which is helpful for producing good strong eggshells in laying hens. You don't need to provide it until they are laying or at point of lay. Most commercial feeds have supplemental calcium, but I've found that my hens' eggs have much stronger, thicker shells when they have oyster shell available. I just have it in a little rabbit feeder attached to the wall of the coop - my 28 hens go thru about 3 cups of it in 2 months. It is not the same as grit, which is an insoluble granite or some similar small rock/pebble offering that is necessary for digestion of various things - if the chickens have access to dirt and little pebbles, they will find their own grit-equivalent.
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  4. palochknldy

    palochknldy Chirping

    Jun 7, 2010
    Palo, Iowa
    After using our eggs, we rinse them out, let them dry and then crush to feed back to the girls. Cut the bottom of a container off and nailed it to the wall. They eat it when they need it. Haven't used oyster shells because the egg shells seem to be working for us.
  5. KBChicks

    KBChicks Songster

    Apr 21, 2010
    We started mixing oyster shells in with their feed at about 14 weeks...

    we buy 50 lbs of feed and mix 2-3 lbs of oyster shell with it in a large plastic tub...we've never had a soft shell egg so far..."keeping fingers crossed"...[​IMG]

    editted cuz I can't type...
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  6. BethieofVA

    BethieofVA Songster

    Mar 27, 2010
    Yorktown, Virginia
    I just put it in a pet bowl and placed it in the run for whomever wanted or needed it. I see my one RIR that is laying munching once in awhile. Her shells have been perfect.

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