Do they need grit?
QI am new to hen keeping and have been told I need to get my hens artificial poultry grit. Why do hens need grit?
ACharlotte Popescu says: Grit is needed because it helps hens digest their food. Free range hens can pick this up from the soil but it is always best to supply artificial grit as well, just in case your hens don’t find enough little stones in the soil. Hens don’t have teeth and therefore the grit which goes down through the stomach and sits in the gizzard is used to grind up the grain when it arrives. So grit and grain combine in the gizzard and eventually this mixture comes out as chicken pooh. Occasionally I have seen whole grains of corn in chicken pooh which would indicate a hen has not taken in enough grit. The grit can usually be bought as a mixture which includes oystershell; this is calcium needed for the production of egg shells.