Combining eggshells with your traditional bird feeding methods is a simple and economical solution for adding to the health of your backyard birds. Utilizing eggshells from our own homes, and preparing and setting them out for our birds is a healthy practice for both your native birds and our environment. As you will read below, combining eggshells with your current bird seed will give your birds some much needed extra calcium. As always, we recommend our Mill Creek bird seed, as this non-GMO bird seed is proven to increase calcium levels in our feathered friends, contains no filler and is great for both the environment and our birds.
Particularly in the spring, when most birds are raising hatchlings, eggshells can provide that extra bit of calcium they need. In addition to the added calcium, the crushed eggshells also help birds to better digest their food. There have been studies showing that Blue Jays will often peel the paint off houses in harsh winters, often believed to contain a small amount of calcium for the bird!
How To Prepare Eggshells For Birds
The first step is ensuring the eggshells are sterilized to protect them against the possibility of salmonella poisoning. First, wash the eggshells out using warm water and then cook them. This can be done one of two ways: boiling or baking them. When boiling them, allot for about 10 minutes in boiling water to ensure all bacteria is eliminated. You can also opt to bake them in the oven on a cookie pan for around 20 minutes at 250 degrees.
After sterilizing the eggshells you will then want to crush the shells, trying not to leave any pieces any larger than a dime. An easy way to do this is to place the sanitize shells on a paper towel, roll them up and crush them by hand or using a utensil like a rolling pin.
The next step is getting your sterilized and crushed eggshells outdoors for your birds. You can do this a few different ways, experiment and see which method your birds respond best to, but in the end, it is entirely up to you!
Your first option would be to simply place the crushed shells in a separate dish and place it in the vicinity of your bird feeder. Your second option is to scatter the ground beneath your feeder with the crushed shell.
Doing all we can to keep our birds healthy and happy is priority number one and aids in ensuring your backyard remains an oasis for birds for years to come.