If you have backyard chickens, you know that they need to consume quite a lot of calcium in order to continue laying eggs. Many breeds lay an egg every day. With that level of production, it’s really important for chickens to get enough calcium that they can keep producing strong eggs shells.
If your chickens don’t get enough calcium, they will start to lay eggs with soft shells. This is a problem because the eggs are more likely to break. Also, the chickens are at risk for developing health problems if they don’t get enough calcium in their diet.
If you’re like me, you might be wondering where all that calcium is coming from. In most cases, it comes from your chickens’ feed, assuming you’re feeding them a complete commercial feed.
Calcium is found in a variety of different foods, but there are a few that are especially high in calcium, and that you can feed to your chickens.
1. Dairy Products
Dairy products are a great source of calcium for chickens. Milk, yogurt, and cheese are all high in calcium and provide a good source of nutrition for your birds. Just make sure to feed high-fat items in moderation.
2. Leafy Greens
Leafy greens are a great source of calcium for chickens, and they also provide a host of other nutrients. Kale, spinach, and collard greens are all high in calcium and are a great addition to your chickens’ diet.
Believe it or not, eggshells are a great source of calcium for chickens. Some people like to grind up old eggshells and feed them to their chickens to produce…more eggs!
Oyster Shells for Chickens
If all that doesn’t provide enough calcium, there are other options. Supplements can help to keep your chickens laying strong eggs even if they’re not getting enough calcium from other sources.
For my own flock, I like to use Manna Pro Oyster Shells. These chips of oyster shells and coral contain tons of calcium. Just feed them free-choice to your flock in separate containers, and they should do a great job of taking care of your flock’s calcium needs.