For an adult hen who is laying eggs, calcium is pulled from the hen’s body to create the egg. An egg contains 94-97% calcium carbonate. That’s a lot of calcium to pull from a hen who isn’t getting extra calcium supplemented to her! This can cause problems for our little feathered friends. The great news is that if you leave oyster shells out all the time, hens can tell when their body needs more! They are incredibly smart birds and so fascinating. When we supplement calcium, we are supporting the eggshell quality to prevent breakage, supporting our chickens’ bone strength, and strengthening their immune and cardiovascular systems. That seems like a pretty important job!
Luckily, all you have to do is leave out some oyster shells for freewill supplementing and it’ll take care of this need in their bodies. I still leave a bowl of oyster shells out for the girls to take in calcium whenever they need to.
IS FEEDING BACK EGGSHELLS ENOUGH?
I will occasionally feed back eggshells to our flock. Or, I’ll scramble some eggs and leave the eggshells in for an added calcium boost. However, I don’t depend on eggshells to provide the main source of calcium because they don’t contain the same fast-release calcium that oyster shells contain. If feeding back eggshells is your go-to form of calcium, you need to be very consistent in providing them. I don’t have time for all of that. It’s just simply easier for me to fill a bowl of crushed oyster shells and hand out my new favorite treat as opposed to keeping track of all our eggshells.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR?
A lack of calcium can be seen in a few different ways in your flock. Soft eggshells, aggressive behavior, broken bones, and a drop in egg production can all be signs of calcium deficiency. Oyster shells and grit are always a good idea to have out at all times. Strong Animals Chicken Essentials took it to the next level (in my opinion!) by adding this awesome form of calcium right into one of my girls’ favorite snacks. I know without a doubt, this treat is packed full of incredible nutrients that benefit my chickens and their beautiful eggs!
MY FAVORITE OYSTER TREAT
Drum roll please! On top of including oyster shells for my girls, I feed them this new treat! Honestly, all it takes is for them to hear the crinkle of the bag and they come running. I can barely walk through the sea of chickens (all 40 of them) to hand it out before I’m trampled ha.
Golden Graze™ promotes quality eggs with golden yolks and Omega-3 fatty acids and it includes oyster shells for an added boost of calcium for you hens! It contains oregano essential oils, multi-grains, cracked corn, oyster shells, marigold petals and flaxseed.
Oyster shells support egg quality
Marigold petals for golden yolks
Flaxseed for Omega-3 fatty acids
Golden Graze is available in 5 lb. resealable pouch and is so handy to keep in your coop. Your chickens will literally “flock” to it!
Some girls just can’t wait long enough! 😂
Until next time,
-The Wing Lady