I am new to chicken keeping; I just got my first ladies last week and everything is going well.  What I was wondering is, is there a supplier that sells in small quantities things like oyster shells, grit, DE?  I live in Edgewood and all I seem to see are 10 lbs or bigger bags of these things and that seems like it would be a 10 years supply for my little needs. 

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I don't know about Edgewood. I would call around to the feed stores near you. However....

DE you can get in smallish (but maybe they're 10#) bags at La Montanita Coop. DE would be tough to do in bulk/small packages b/c it is so powdery.

Grit you shouldn't need, just get a bucketful of dirt from outside and put it in a bowl, the chicks will peck out what they need. If your chicks are already outside, then you shouldn't have to worry.

Oyster shell you may not need depending on the quality of your hens' diet. But you may have a fellow chicken keeper nearby who will sell you a pound. I could sell you a pound of oyster shell as well as various supplements I buy for my chickens (kelp, diamond yeast probiotic) but I'm in the south valley. Not so close.

I know there are some other chicken keepers in Edgewood on this list, so hopefully they will chime in with sources closer to you.

Good luck! Jen

 

 

 

Most hardware stores sell DE (diatomaceous earth) in 5 and 10 pound bags.  Probably a whole lot cheaper than the La Montanita Coop.  I have never given oyster shells to my girls--I am assuming there is enough calcium in the laying feed that I give them.  And as for dirt...I agree with jenprosser---they love a good bucketful of dirt!
Thanks for your input.  Will look for DE when I am next at the hardware store and if not there then at the Coop.  Hadn't thought about us being surroundec by crushed granite (boy do I feel dumb).  Where my chickens are at they are on mostly pine needles and very fine earth.  I don't see any little pebbles etc for them but they will be earily available.  As to the oyster shells, I will wait to see if they need them.  So far they don't because they aren't even laying yet :)
Diatomaceous earth is made up of fossilized diatoms, which are hard shelled algae.  It's mostly silica.  It scratches the shells of insects, and thereby kills them by dehydration (leaky exoskeletons don't work so well). The chickens like to roll in the stuff to rid themselves of parasites. I've only used it a couple of times, and they seemed to like it OK. Bought a bag of it at ACE hardware for a few dollars. Pretty funny watching them roll around in the stuff.  But if you really want to have a good time, get a carton of meal-worms for 'em!
The guys at the feed store on Church road seem REALLY REALLY nice and willing to help...... 

Thanks Jaime.  I have gone there and gotten some of my supplies.  Will check them out again.  I agree, they are really nice.

 

I go to Millers Feed&Supply at 8747 4th NW. They've been great about filling up my homemade grain bags with whatever I need. I don't have a lot of storage area and only 3 chickens. I've gotten scratch, crumble, DE(they brown bag it) and oyster shell bulk. The first time I went there I just got 2 lbs of each to tide them over the weekend since I missed a pick up at the coop warehouse. I also got some all natural spray to wipe down the inside of my coop on cleaning day to keep the flys&ticks away.

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