Too much oyster shell?


In the Brooder
6 Years
Jul 30, 2013
Hello all, this is my first time posting (forgive me if this has already been covered, I couldn't find a previous thread). I've only been keeping chickens for a year. I currently have 7 hens, raised from hatchlings. Today I brought home a new hen (she is 6 mos. old) and have her in a separate coop away from the others for a quarantine period. I filled her feeder with Purina Layena crumbles and added vitamins/electrolytes to her water. She has been drinking normally, but has not touched her food yet. I also placed a small dish of oyster shell in her coop. She ate the WHOLE dish of oyster shell. I asked the previous owner what she was previously being fed and she said cracked corn and table scraps (no chicken feed). Would it be normal for her to consume that much shell? Will it harm her to have eaten that much? Thank you for any insight!


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Project Manager
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Jul 31, 2015
Houston, TX
My Coop
My Coop
She has not been feed a normal well balanced diet in the past, obviously.
I'm not sure if that much calcium is/will be bad or not.
I would take it away from her...not offer it again until she is laying regularly.

She may not actually know what feed looks like...keep an eye on her and see if she starts eating the feed tomorrow.

She should be ok, chickens don't like change.

drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Aug 26, 2009
Out to pasture
I think she shouldn't be offered the oyster shell or layer feed until she starts laying.
Some folks prefer hens on grower feed because it was more protein than layer & have a side feeder with oyster shell.

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