Mother Raising chicks naturally- is sand ok in the run and do I need to separate?


In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 2, 2014
Cumming, GA
I currently have seven hens and one small silky rooster. I have two Bentham hens one silky one frizzle sitting on a clutch of 5 eggs each 8 each. The rest of the hens are various standard size breeds. They currently all live in harmony. The hens are both are due to hatch this Saturday. I have 2 questions, number one is: is sand okay in the run for the baby chicks ? I have hay in the hen house and in their hutch. Also should I separate them from the rest of the flock? I've read arguments both ways but I feel each situation is unique I moved a rabbit hutch inside of the run and I thought I would put the two hens and the 10 chicks and when they hatch for a little while with a small hole so they the small hens and chicks can get in and out themselves and this way the other birds it would be too big to get in and out of the hole but could still see them. Chicks and mama hens would have their own food and water inside of the hutch in addition to the water and food located outside of the hutch for the rest of the flock. Any advice would be appreciated thank you!


7 Years
Jun 29, 2012
In my experience, you should be just fine leaving the broodies in with the rest of the flock. Any broody worth her salt will make sure the other chickens respect her babies, and she will do a fine job helping her little chicks to integrate smoothly. Sand is fine. The only reason most people avoid using sand in brooders is because it produces a lot of dust, which is a mess if you have the chickens indoors.

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