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Question Concerning Oyster Shell

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by BeckyLa, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    Our EE pullets will be 4 months old in a few days, but we have 3 - 1 year old layers in with them. Are the pullets old enough now that I can resume giving oyster shell for the sake of the hens that are laying?
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2007
  2. allen wranch

    allen wranch Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    Go ahead and add the oyster shell. The four month olds probably won't bother it. I assume everyone is on starter/grower.
     
  3. K8tieCat

    K8tieCat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 15, 2007
    Northern California
    I am new to chicken keeping, and I could be wrong.... but now that my 5 months olds have just begun to lay, I notice that only the ones who are laying are interested in the oyster shells, and the other leave it alone. Sort of weird, because how do they "know"? Anyway, I just leave a bowl out and whoever wants some get it.
     
  4. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    Thank you both for your help! Yes, Carla, everybody is on starter/grower and doing very well. I'll get some oyster shell out for them today!
     
  5. SandraChick

    SandraChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:AH- they DO know

    What you will find is if you let your chickens free range, they will balance their own diet.

    For example, because I feed band tailed pigeons, there is cracked corn and sunflower seeds out on the ground all the time-- you could say free choice. The chickens will go there and eat a few pecks and then move on to something else. Same with treats...if I have too much, they just leave it and go eat some grass or bugs or whatever.

    It's the wonder of nature.

    Sandra
     
  6. Zenbirder

    Zenbirder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 3, 2007
    New Mexico
    Sandra,
    how many band-tails do you have? We have had an unusual influx this year of about 60! They really are huge, when they all take off it is very loud. I do agree, the chickens seem to balance their own diet (with a bit of watermelon treat from me).
    Susan
     
  7. SandraChick

    SandraChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Our numbers of band tails are low this year...just under 100. Last year my highest count was ~175. We also are only getting one pair of mourning doves this year and had 3pairs last year. Of course, last year we had our first pair of collared doves....if you're not familiar with them, they are an invasive, non-native bird. Pigeon/dove numbers tend to go down as collared dove numbers go up---this trend is especially dramatic with mourning doves. Very glad I've not seen any this year.

    Cheapest way to feed them is to use chicken scratch on the ground and then fill the bird feeders only part way with sunflower seeds. It can be quite comical to watch them figure out how to get the sunflower seeds out of tradtional non platform type of feeders!

    They winter elsewhere, but their return every year signals that summer is on it's way and their departure for us signals the rainy season is soon to come. WE just love having them around.

    Sandra
     
  8. Zenbirder

    Zenbirder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 3, 2007
    New Mexico
    Sandra,
    We had our first pair of eurasion collards last year, now probably 6 pair living on our property and they have spread rapidly around town. The numbers of mourning doves varies from a few to a few hundred, also white winged doves so I can't tell if they are up or down. The band-taileds have been breaking the hanging feeders by getting up on them, they knock the ports clear off. Now we ready for the arrival of the hummingbirds, 4 species and we can go through 2 1/2 gallons of sugar water a day at the height! [​IMG]
    Sorry Becky, didn't mean to hijack your thread!
     

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