Chicken lays giant egg with another egg inside it

Chicken lays giant egg: A hen in a village in China's Guizhou Province has reportedly lain a nearly half-pound egg that had another egg inside it. How often does this happen?

A hen in a small village in China's Guizhou Province has apparently lain a remarkable egg.

According to New Tang Dynasty Television, the egg weighed almost half a pound. Inside were two yolks, plus another fully formed egg, making for a three-yolker.

“I’m more than 80 now, but I’ve never seen eggs like this before,” Ms. Yang, the hen's owner, told NTD.

This is not the first time this particular hen has reportedly lain a giant egg. Yang says she's dropped five oversized ova in the past three weeks, and she speculated that the eggs have something to do with the hen's diet of rice, which the hen prefers to corn.  

Is this the biggest egg ever measured? Oddly enough, the Guinness Book of World Records created their Worlds Largest Chicken Egg category only recently, in 2011. That was in response to a hen in Yell County, Ark., laying an egg that, according to CNNweighed 5.4 ounces and measured 3 1/2 inches long

This record was reportedly topped a year later by Franciscana, a hen in Colombia who reportedly laid an egg weighing 8.6 ounces, which would have made it even bigger than the Chinese hen's egg. 

For what it's worth, the record for the smallest egg ever laid goes to a hen in West Virginia in 2011. Her egg weighed just over a tenth of an ounce, and was about the size of a penny. 

But what about the egg inside the egg? How rare is that?

Like almost everything on the Internet, this video might, of course, be a hoax. But eggs-within-eggs are not unheard of in nature. This 2008 video from the New Scientist magazine explains how Matryoshka eggs are formed. Basically, abnormal contractions push the egg back up the hen's oviduct and into the ovary, where it becomes surrounded by another egg.

An egg curator at the British Natural History Museum describes this as "a relatively rare occurrence." But if you do ever see an egg inside another egg, at least you now know which came first.

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