New chicks first live off egg yoke
Q Why don’t chicks hatch hungry?
Andy Cawthray says: Despite all the effort of hatching out of the egg, chicks don’t need to feed within the first 24 hours of life. Instead they live off the egg yolk they absorbed during the final stages of hatching. Chicks that have dried off and fluffed up can be transported quite easily during that period, provided there is sufficient warmth. In days gone by, it was not uncommon for deliveries to be made of ‘day olds’ to rural communities using the rail network. They do, however, need to eat and drink fairly quickly after that first day as their resources become depleted.
For their first 24 hours, young chicks live off the egg yolk they absorbed during the final stages of hatching