Giant elephant bird egg estimated at $83,000



2015-06-26 13:51:59

Giant elephant bird egg estimated at $83,000

The enormous elephant bird egg stands at around a foot in height

Paul Fraser Collectibles,Saturday 23August 2014

A giant elephant bird egg is to headline a natural history sale at Summers Place in Sussex, UK on November 26 with an estimate of 30,000-50,000 ($49,761-82,935).

The species was native to Madagascar and is believed to have been hunted to extinction by humans sometime between the 14th and 17th centuries.

The birdscould grow up to 11 feet in height.

Elephant bird The elephant bird could grow to a height of 11 feet

Errol Fuller, the curator for the sale, commented: "I have written several books on extinct birds and the Elephant Bird has always been particularly fascinating. The egg of one of these birds is simply a miracle, it's over a foot in length (30 cm) and larger than any known dinosaur egg.

"In fact it is the largest egg ever recorded and engineers have calculated that structurally and functionally it is impossible for an egg to be any larger."

A 12-inch example sold for 66,675 ($101,613) at Christie's New York in April last year.

A stuffed passenger pigeon, valued at 4,000-6,000 ($6,634-9,952), is also likely to prove a draw.

At one time the birds were among the most widespread in North America, but during the 19th century they were hunted on an industrial scale as a cheap source of food.

The last passenger pigeon, named Martha, died in Cincinnati Zoo in 1914.

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