Oyster Shell

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by nakstk, Nov 30, 2011.

  1. nakstk

    nakstk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 19, 2011
    Kalama, Washington
    My SS chickens are 20.5 weeks they have yet to lay an egg. They are on layer crumble now. If and when do I add oyster shell to their diet? If I add it too soon will they get egg bound?
     
  2. erinszoo

    erinszoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 28, 2011
    North Central Oklahoma
    We added oyster shell after our first bird started laying at 23 weeks. Never have had one egg bound.
     
  3. nakstk

    nakstk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Kalama, Washington
    Is it necessary to add to their diet? and what about grit?
     
  4. clickncluck

    clickncluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have speckled sussex hens. One started laying at 20.5 weeks, the other at 23 weeks. I give them oyster shell mixed in with their grit, but if I understand correctly (and I'm a newbie) layer feed has the calcium in it so it isn't really necessary.
    If your girls' faces are red and they are squatting for you, it won't be much longer :)
     
  5. SilverMoon

    SilverMoon Out Of The Brooder

    I believe oyster shells how ever added are used to strengthen the shells of the eggs when they begin to start laying. I guess it makes it harder rather than thin to the point they cant hold up nicely. We are fairly knew ourselves to chicken raising ourselves.
     
  6. nakstk

    nakstk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Kalama, Washington
    Quote:That's what we have Speckled Sussex and they are 20.5 weeks. 2 out of 5 are squatting I am having a hard time waiting. I am so excited to get my first egg.
     
  7. trooper

    trooper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]:thumbsup:caf Welcome new members.If you feel that you need to give your birds oyster shell or grit;put it in individual containers seperate from the feed.If they need it they will have access to it.If you put it in their feed they will eat it and won't really need it.I have mine in small containers in the coop so that they always have access to it on their own.[​IMG]:old:yiipchick
     
  8. emerald eyes

    emerald eyes Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 22, 2011
    I don't really use oyster shell, except for the winter because they aren't getting the additional fruits & veggies from our kitchen scraps. When I do, I sprinkle some of it onto the ground in the pen, that way when they are picking up dirt & gravel, they will eat the shell. It seems to work fine. I was told by the grain store that unless the egg shells get really soft, they don't really need the extra calcuim if they are on layer pellets. I specifically asked about this when I integrated my 3 hens with the pullets about a month ago, because they were eating finisher/grower. I tried to keep a small bowl of layer pellet but with 30+ chickens, they don't seem to care where the food is as long as its food. I bought some oyster shell, but all the chickens seem to like to eat it. I didn't see any trouble with egg shells, in fact I had to throw one against a rock to crack it open..found it under the coop (don't know when it was laid) and didn't want to risk eating it.
     
  9. Katydid2011

    Katydid2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree with Trooper. Put the grit and oyster shell in containers separate from their feed and they'll eat it when they need it. I wouldn't force feed it to them by mixing it in with their feed. My hens go through quite a lot of oyster shell and I never have a problem with soft shells.
     

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