BUFFALO, NY – A rare and exciting discovery at the Buffalo Museum of Science: The egg of an extinct elephant bird found in a locked cabinet in a storeroom in the museum.
Paige Langle, Director of Zoology Collections, is helping to modernize the museum's catalog system. She saw a large cream-colored egg called a model. In fact, it was named wrong. On further observation, she realized that it was probably the real deal.
"I opened the case and I gently picked up the egg and could immediately feel the difference and I could see the difference and the way of pitting and coloring It was just that moment, oh my god … Me think it's real. "
The museum turned to the Art Conservation Department at SUNY Buffalo State. The egg was carefully examined and examined for confirmation.
"You can see these little white spots, so we hypothesized that it was actually fertilized," said Kathryn Leacock, director of the collections.
The egg is 1
Records in the museum indicate that the egg was purchased from London in 1939. When the museum opened in 1929 at its present location, it was a great impetus to fill it with collections. According to Leacock, employees would write wish lists.
"The person working at the bird sanctuary wanted an elephant bird egg." He searched everywhere and could buy one from London.
There are fewer than 40 intact eggs in public facilities.
Elephant birds are flightless and found only in Madagascar. The eggs served as a food source for humans, which probably led to their extinction more than 600 years ago. "This egg is equivalent to about 150 chicken eggs," said Leacock.
There are only artist depictions of elephant birds. It has thick legs and an average of 10 feet in height and weighs between 770 and 1,100 pounds. Elephant Bird Eggs are known as the largest eggs ever laid by a vertebrate, including dinosaurs, with some eggs that are up to 13 inches long.
Leacock said the egg could remain intact because it partially petrified. She said it was "priceless" and now Buffalo can be proud to own an egg from an extinct elephant bird.
The egg will be exhibited in the museum from the 1st of May.
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