The elephant bird egg measures 12 inches long and 9 inches! Elephant birds, which were hunted to extinction in Madagascar by the 17th century, were among the largest birds to ever walk the Earth.
Next month this giant egg goes up for auction at Christie’s South Kensington salesroom, at an estimated going price between $30,000 and $45,000.
Measuring over 100 times the average size of a chicken egg.
Size of Elephant bird (centre, in purple) compared to a human, an ostrich (second from right, in maroon), and some non-avian theropod dinosaurs. Each gridline is one meter in height.
Elephant birds are an extinct family of flightless birds found only on the island of Madagascar. They comprised the genera Aepyornis and Mullerornis. The reasons for and timings of their extinctions remain unclear, although there are written accounts of elephant bird sightings on the island in the 17th century.
Aepyornis was among the heaviest known birds Dromornis stirtoni of Australia reached a similar weight.