In all seriousness, this is the second humongous egg that someone has laid this week and it's caused me to ultra-curious as to what causes it. Is it normal? Do I need to be concerned? Is this the return of the double yolks or even triple yolks? A newbie chicken farmer has lots of questions.
Thank goodness for Google because I was able to find lots of great information on this odd phenomena. Prepare yourself, because you are about to learn more about chicken ovaries and egg laying than you probably want to know.
Hens are alot like us human women in that hormones dictate the development of an egg. In good layers, a yolk is released approximately every 23 hours and the ovum travels through the reproductive system until a complete egg is formed. The majority of the egg's time is spent in what's called the "Shell Gland" where the outer shell is added - in fact, it will spend about 20 hours in that gland. And then, as the egg is laid, the protecting coating or "bloom" is added. What's happening when we get a double-yolked or triple-yolked egg is that two yolks are relased at the same time or in rapid succession or, for some reason, the first yolk gets stuck in the oviduct. Apparently, it's pretty common in new layers as they get the hang of it. And, althought there are some breeds that are more generically predispositioned to laying multi-yolked eggs than others, there is a still a probability of just 1 in 1000 that an egg will have multiple yolks. Fascinating, no? If you really want more info with helpful (gross) pictures, go check out this site.
I'm not sure which of the girls laid these as they are different colors - it may very well be that one is from one of the Austrolorps and the other from a Barred Rock. I thought I might be able to tell by which hen was walking funny. (Just kidding.) Maybe I should start referring to the Austrolorp's as Aus-triches. (*giggle*)
Okay, enough with the corny jokes. Hope you're enjoying your day,