In case you haven’t been keeping up with Science (the magazine), The New York Times reporting, or NPR’s on air coverage, there are new developments in the realm of eggs.
Which is to say, there is nothing new in eggs, but there are new understandings about eggs.
For years, people have known that different species of birds lay different shaped eggs. Scientists were reasonably sure this was not so that people could nearly wipe out some species collecting their eggs (yes, egg collections were a thing in the 17th and 18th centuries) and they were reasonably sure it wasn’t just trendiness (yes, but rounder eggs really are the latest, my dear), but they didn’t have a good explanation for the differences.
Presumably the birds have understood the importance of their eggs for a long time (it’s just that they weren’t telling), and now we (and by “we” I mean humanity) has a better guess as to why some birds lay rounder eggs, some lay oval eggs, and some lay pointy eggs.
Turns out there is an egg shape-flying type/wing shape correlation. If you are a strong flier, you are more likely to be of a species that lays long or pointy eggs.
To figure this out, researchers looked at over 50,000 eggs. That is a lot of omelets. Just sayin’.
Bird experts are very excited about this new theory (and by “theory” I still mean guess) and plan to continue refining their studies.
Unfortunately, none of this research has answered the most important question, so we still don’t know which came first, the birdie or the egg.