It’s no yolk … this is a true egg story with a big difference.
A hen in Queensland gave farmers quite the surprise this week when it laid an egg the size of an adult’s hand — and there was another full egg, complete with shell, inside.
The regular free-range* chicken at Stockman’s Eggs in Kairi in far north Queensland, produced the giant egg on Sunday before it was found by shocked worker “Ziggy”.
It weighs 176g, which is three times the size and weight of a normal egg.
Third-generation* egg farmer Scott Stockman, 47, who runs the family farm with his dad, said: “We have never had an egg so large before.”
When asked how it was possible for a hen to lay such a whopper, Mr Stockman said he had asked quite a few experts and it was most likely “just a freak of nature”.
“The experts say (the hen) must have been really well looked after and well fed,” Mr Stockman said.
All the Stockman’s Eggs hens are fed on corn, which produces a golden yolk, and that’s what Mr Stockman expected to see inside. But he was in for a shock.
“When I opened it I thought we might get two, three or four yolks inside, because you quite often get double yolkers, but we were really surprised to find another whole egg inside the big egg,” he said.
“It was a fully formed egg.”
Mr Stockman, whose farm was started in 1923 by his grandfather and produces up to 45,000 eggs a day, said they had now thrown away both eggs.
free-range: kept in natural conditions, not caged
third-generation: the third generation of a family (ie, grandad, dad, son)
LISTEN TO TODAY’S STORY
1. Surprise find
Read or listen to the article carefully and complete the following activities.
- Who is Mr Stockman? Write two or three sentences about Mr Stockman and what he does.
- What is the main point of this article?
- What is the approximate height and width of this egg? (You may need to ‘borrow’ an adult’s hand to help you) Draw this egg in comparison to a ‘normal’ egg.
- Approximately how much does a ‘normal’ egg weigh?
- Why does Mr Stockman feed corn to his chickens?
- How many chickens do you think Mr Stockman has on his farm? Why do you think that?
Extension: Imagine that you were the one to find this egg on Mr Stockman’s farm. You knew this egg was special so you took it without showing anyone. Write a narrative story about how you found this egg and what adventure it led you on
- did it have magical powers?
- did it hatch?
- was there something extraordinary inside?
Ensure that your story has an interesting beginning, exciting body of the story and that it comes to a logical conclusion. Give your story an intriguing title.
Time: Allow 60 minutes
Curriculum links: English, Mathematics
2. Super Sized eggs!
What are the benefits of having super-sized eggs? Imagine Mr Stockman was able to work out how and why this egg was so big and was able to ensure that all his chickens laid eggs like this all the time. Write down the questions he might need to find out before going into the ‘super-sized’ egg business.
Draw up a two-column chart. In one column list the BENEFITS of being able to produce eggs this large. In the other column write some DIFFICULTIES he might need to overcome before he can sell them in shops.
Benefit – you could sell each egg for more money
Difficulty – they wont fit in the regular egg carton.
Extension: Create an advertisement for these new ‘super-sized’ eggs. Your ad could be in any form you choose – television, radio, newspaper. Think of a catchy name for the eggs. Make sure you highlight the benefits of large eggs in your ad. Ensure your ad catches the eye (or ear) of your audience. If your ad is for TV or radio – you might come up with a catchy jingle. If it is a printed ad make sure it is visually catchy (think of design, layout, colour choice etc)
Time: Allow 40 minutes.
Curriculum links: English, The Arts – Visual Arts, Drama, Humanities – Economics and Business
After reading the article, with a partner, highlight all the openers you can find in blue. Discuss if they are powerful and varied openers or not. Why do you think the journalists has used a mix of simple and power openers? Would you change any, and why?
IN ONE SENTENCE, TELL US WHAT YOU LIKE ABOUT TODAY’S STORY
Please do not use one-word answers. Explain what you enjoyed or found interesting about today’s article. Use lots of adjectives.