Components Of Cuttlebone

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default Components Of Cuttlebone

Post  FinchG on Fri Mar 16, 2012 2:05 pm

Components Of Cuttlebone

An Analysis of a Sample of Cuttlebone
Acid insolubles 1.4%
Moisture content 2.3%
Organic content 8.9%
Calcium 85% Calcium Carbonate
Magnesium 0.42 % Magnesium Carbonate
Potassium 63 mg/kg
Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen 8,300 mg/kg
Total Phosphate 20 mg/kg


Heavy Metals (mg/kg = parts per million)
Zinc 167
Iron 101
Cobalt 19
Copper 11
Manganese 8


The following heavy metals were not detected above the detection limit of 1 mg/kg: arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead, mercury, molybdenum, nickel, silver and tin.

By Dick Schroeder
Cuttlebone is the calcareous internal shell of a cuttlefish. A cuttlefish is a cephalopod, related to squids and octopi. They have eight arms and two tentacles. They eject a black ink-like fluid when in danger. In fact, the outer, hard shell is often stained with this black ink. They are found in oceans all over the world. I have even picked up nice pieces of cuttlebone while walking along the beach in Australia.


Importance To Diet
Cuttlefish is an important dietary item in many countries. Most come from Asia, especially Taiwan and the Philippines. Some of our Philippine cuttlebones are more than 16 inches long. Cuttlebone is the only bone in the cuttlefish, and it is discarded when the fish are cleaned in preparation for eating. These bones are washed and sun bleached for export.


The major component of cuttlebone is calcium carbonate (85 percent). This is also the major component in eggshells. The next major component is organic material (8.9 percent), probably mainly carbohydrate material. The nitrogen content of 8,300 mg/kg indicates that approximately 20 percent of the organic material is proteinaceous. The 1.4- percent acid-insoluble material is silicate (sand). The remaining elements are all trace elements. No specified toxic heavy metals were detected.


Do Birds Need Cuttlebone?
The question remains, does my bird need cuttlebone? The answer is yes. Your bird, especially an egg-laying hen, needs calcium. Cuttlebone provides a natural, inexpensive source of calcium carbonate as well as other trace minerals. Most manmade mineral blocks are made from plaster of paris. They also contain whatever the manufacturer decided to add, whether it be food coloring or seed. On the other hand, cuttlebone is a natural product, containing no toxins or contaminants.


All birds need calcium, and cuttlebone is as good a source as any. Most of the parrots will willingly chew up a cuttlebone. Others, such as mynahs, toucans, etc., will not eat cuttlebone as it naturally occurs. In feeding these softbill species, it is just a matter of scraping cuttlebone into their soft-food mix.

My finches won't eat the cuttlebone so I use a grater and turn it into powder.

When I put this in their cage the Gouldians can't seem to stop eating it, even though their is oyster shell, kelp granuals, charcoal and mircle meal, they seem to really eat the powdered cuttlebone. FinchG








FinchG
Lots Of Societies, 11 Gouldians, 4 Orange Cheek Waxbills, 2 Orange Weavers, 3 Spice Finches,1 Quaker, 1 Conure and 2 Lineolated Parakeets


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