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What came first the chicken or the egg

Chicken or the egg

Science can help us find the answer. This is a riddle we can unscramble with the tools of science—more specifically, the principles of evolutionary biology. The first eggs Eggs are found throughout the animal kingdom. Technically speaking, an egg is simply the membrane-bound vessel inside which an embryo can grow and develop until it can survive on its own.

Eggs of all shapes and sizes exist throughout the animal kingdom.

  1. Each membrane has a slightly different function but the addition of all these extra layers provided a conveniently enclosed, all-in-one life support system.
  2. These changes and mutations only have an effect at the point where a new zygote is created.
  3. Interested to find out more? Our Best Articles Daily Smart choice!

At some point, a different kind of egg began to evolve, which had three extra membranes inside: Each membrane has a slightly different function but the addition of all these extra layers provided a conveniently enclosed, all-in-one life support system: The extra fluids encased in the amnion, plus the tough outer shell, provide extra protection too.

Diagram of a chicken egg in its 9th day—an example of an amniotic egg. They opened up a whole new world of opportunities for land-based egg-laying locations, and the extra membranes paved the way for bigger and mostly better eggs.

  • After all, are you really going to disagree with Neil deGrasse Tyson?
  • However, later enlightenment philosophers began to question this solution;
  • Therefore according to this research an egg can only form if it has been inside a chicken;
  • The first eggs Eggs are found throughout the animal kingdom;
  • If you choose to make a purchase, Curiosity will get a share of the sale.

Our best guess is that the last common ancestor of both tetrapods four-limbed animals with a backbone and the amniotes four-limbed animals with a backbone that lay eggs with all those extra layers lived around 370-340 million years ago, though some sources put the first amniote species as living closer to 312 million years ago. This leaves us with another eggsellent question: The first chickens The very first chicken in existence would have been the result of a genetic mutation or mutations taking place in a zygote produced by two almost-chickens or proto-chickens.

This means two proto-chickens mated, combining their DNA together to form the very first cell of the very first chicken. Somewhere along the line, genetic mutations occurred in that very first cell, and those mutations copied themselves into every other body cell as the chicken embryo grew.

The first true chicken. A male red junglefowl, the closest ancestor to the modern domestic chicken Image adapted from: The red junglefowl Gallus gallus is native to a range of south-eastern Asian countries including India, southern China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. Archaeological evidence suggests that the red junglefowl was first domesticated some 10,000 years ago, although DNA analysis and mathematical simulations suggest that the domestic chicken actually diverged from junglefowl much earlier an estimated 58,000 years ago.

Back to our original question: Eggs were around way before chickens even existed.

  • Archaeological evidence suggests that the red junglefowl was first domesticated some 10,000 years ago, although DNA analysis and mathematical simulations suggest that the domestic chicken actually diverged from junglefowl much earlier an estimated 58,000 years ago;
  • At some point, some almost-chicken creature produced an egg containing a bird whose genetic makeup, due to some small mutation, was fully chicken;
  • Send us your question at history time;
  • The seemingly endless cycle of chickens and eggs, to them, suggested that the world had always been exactly the same as it was, with no discrete beginning or ending;
  • The oldest fossils of dinosaur eggs and embryos are about 190 million years old;
  • The aim of the research was to understand how chickens make eggshells, which is a fascinating process that can be modelled when designing new materials and processes.

This claim came from some researchers studying how chicken eggshells form. Hens get their supply of calcium for eggshell production from dietary sources calcium-rich seafood shells, such as oyster or prawn shells, are a popular snack for backyard hens for this reason.

  1. If it was an egg, what laid it?
  2. Ancient paradox[ edit ] The question represents an ancient folk paradox addressing the problem of origins and first cause.
  3. The aim of the research was to understand how chickens make eggshells, which is a fascinating process that can be modelled when designing new materials and processes.

One such protein, called ovocleidin-17 or OC-17 for shortis only found in the ovary of a chicken, leading to the suggestion that the chicken must have come before the chicken egg, since without OC-17, there can be no chicken egg formation. Interestingly, it seems that this protein is responsible for speeding up the rate of eggshell formation, enabling hens to build an egg from scratch and lay it within a 24-hour timeframe.

Domestic chickens are extremely efficient egg layers, capable of producing a fresh egg roughly every 24 hours.

Now You Know: Which Came First, the Chicken or the Egg?

Australian Academy of Science So, can we lay this age-old conundrum to rest? Or are scientists and philosophers still scrambling to find an answer? At the end of the day, the question is something of a false dichotomy.

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