The incredible work of evolution makes all birds unique and fascinating. They add life and color to the world with their striking plumage and unbelievable size varieties. And to be recognized as one of the superior in the avian world is truly exceptional.
So, which bird lays the largest egg? It is no other than the ostrich! Their eggs can measure up to 6 inches long and support an adult man’s weight. These big flightless birds are record holders in numerous categories among the avians.
Keep reading to know more amazing facts about the ostrich’s eggs and other world-record-holding bird species.
Table of Contents
- All About Ostrich and Their Eggs
- List of Bird That Lays the Largest Egg
- The Animal With the Largest Egg in the World
All About Ostrich and Their Eggs
Native to Africa, the ostrich has the scientific name of Struthio camelus. The term camelus, which translates to camel, implies that they can survive for extended periods without water.
Listed below are three more facts about ostriches’ world records!
Fact #1: They have the largest egg among the avians
Measuring up to 6 inches (15.2 cm) long and 5 inches (12.7cm) wide, the ostrich’s eggs are the biggest eggs laid by birds. To help you visualize, you can imagine that you’d need up to 24 chicken eggs to make one as big as an ostrich omelet.
These large bird eggs weigh 3 pounds (1.4 kilos) and can withstand an adult man’s weight. Their yolks are also the largest, weighing up to 1.8 ounces. It has been noted that ostrich eggs are almost comparable to dinosaur’s in size.
The female ostrich can lay up to 18 eggs annually in their “dump nest.” Both males and females incubate the eggs – this process can last a month and more.
According to the Guinness world of records, the 5.5-pound (2.5-kilo) ostrich egg owned by Kristan and Gunnar Sahlin’s farm in Sweden holds the largest egg.
Fact #2: They are the biggest bird in the world
Of course, the largest egg will be laid by the largest bird. Based on the African Wildlife Foundation, ostriches can stand up to 9 feet (2.7 meters) in height!
Not only are they the longest, but they don’t spare the crown for being the heaviest. These birds’ weight can reach 320 pounds (145 kg)! That’s almost double the average weight of an adult man.
In addition, with a diameter of 2 inches (5cm), ostriches’ eyes are the biggest among any animal on land.
Fact #3: They are the fastest land bird in the world.
Ostrich has an unmistakable appearance. Once you see their black and white plumage, long neck and legs, especially their bald head, you will know for sure they are the ostrich!
The feature that stands out most among their anatomy is their long and thin legs, which are perfectly in place to balance their center of gravity.
But not only are ostriches’ legs unique, but their two-toed feet also differ from other birds because other avian species all have either three or four.
Due to their unique build, ostriches can run as fast as 43mph with excellent maneuverability. So, with their powerful skinny legs, they bagged the trophies of being the fastest bird on land and the fastest animal with two legs.
Thus, don’t even think of battling these birds! Even though they cannot fly, one kick can be powerful enough to kill a lion in a single blow.
List of Bird That Lays the Largest Egg
Yes, the ostrich lays the largest egg among all other birds. But did you know that it is actually the smallest compared to its mother size? In this section, let us appreciate the other animal lays the largest egg in the world.
#Kiwis (has the largest egg in relation to its body size)
Compared to the ostrich eggs that only take 2% of their mother’s body weight, the kiwi egg size compared to body actually accounts for 20% of the weight.
With that, it might come to your surprise how often do kiwis lay eggs. Even though the kiwi bird egg to body ratio is six times bigger than other birds, they are still known to be very productive, producing roughly 100 eggs in their lifetime.
Having an extraordinarily large brown kiwi egg has its own advantages. Kiwi bird egg weight up to 13 ounces (371 grams) and contain a very large amount of 65% yolk compared to an average of 40%, making it sustainable to feed the baby birds.
#Emu (has the second-largest egg)
The Emus, a close relative of the ostrich, produce the second-largest egg. Measuring up to 5 inches long and 2.5 ounces in weight, these birds lay a beautiful large green egg.
Native to Australia, they are also the second-largest bird in the world, standing tall at more than 5 feet. Just like their relatives, they do not fly and use their strong legs to sprint instead – their speed can reach an astounding 31 mph.
It’s fascinating to note that female emus battle among themselves when seeking a potential mate while the responsibility for nesting falls to the male emus.
The Animal With the Largest Egg in the World
In general, whale sharks have the largest egg in the world. However, they are not laid like how baby birds are born.
Known as “ovoviviparity,” the female whale sharks produce and hatches their eggs inside their body. As a result, they gave birth to a live young.
While often called the mermaid purse or more likely a devil’s purse, the egg laid by a shark houses one embryo with a yolk sac inside the capsule.
The size of a whale shark’s egg is twice that of an ostrich’s egg. Compared to an ostrich, which is just 6” long and 5” wide, it can reach lengths of up to 12” and 5”, respectively.
What is the largest egg in the world?
The ostrich is known for producing the largest egg in the world, which can grow to be 6 inches long. However, they actually have the smallest egg in proportion to their mother’s weight, with kiwis producing the largest eggs compared to their body size.
In general, the whale shark has the largest eggs of any species, with some measuring up to 12 inches in length.
Is a kiwi’s egg larger than an ostrich’s?
If we compare the egg of a kiwi and an ostrich side by side, the Ostrich’s egg would unquestionably be larger.
However, if we are going to compare the egg size to the proportion of its mother size, then the kiwi would have a larger egg than an ostrich. In fact, when it comes to the egg-to-body-size ratio, the kiwi’s egg is 6 times bigger than any other bird’s.
So, the answer to the kiwi egg vs ostrich egg would depend on the condition. But you can refer to the bird sizes chart for more information.
What bird lays the largest egg crossword clue?
This depends on how many words you have to fill in. Ostrich is usually the correct answer. However, there’s also the elephant bird, which has become extinct, that can lay far bigger eggs than the ostrich.
What British bird lays the largest egg?
This honor belongs to the mute swans. Weighing around 12 ounces (340 grams), their eggs can reach 4.6 inches in length and 2.9 inches in width.
Now that you know which bird lays the largest egg, we hope that ostriches receive more love and distinction as they hold many of the “largest” records. And let’s not forget to tip our hat to the kiwis, who can lay such big eggs compared to their small body size.
The avian world is full of wonders—we are truly lucky to witness its magnificence. How about sharing this article so that your friends can also celebrate birds’ extraordinary achievements too!
George and I became friends after a birdwatching trip with our new group. And we have been enjoying every adventure together. When he told me the idea of establishing a site that shares our experiences and fun, I immediately agreed. After trials and errors, here we have Thayerbirding.