Eggs and Babies
being locked in a tiny, oval-shaped room for two weeks. At first the
walls are cushioned with a goopy liquid, and you're stuck in the middle.
There is no food, but you don't notice. You never feel the least bit
hungry. The room seems huge at first, but as the days go by, the walls
seem to close in. Or is it that you're growing bigger? You're cozy and
comfortable at first, but after 10 or 11 days, you start feeling cramped.
The goopy walls have been drying up somehow, and they now feel a little
hard. You've been curled up for so long, and suddenly you yearn to stretch.
You twist your body around, maybe trying to find a more comfortable
position, and instinctively scratch on the walls with a hard bump on
your beak. Somehow that gives you a satisfying feeling, and you do it
some more. Your eyes are closed, but you sense a tiny ray of light seeping
in where you've been scratching. You stretch, and with a crack, the
walls suddenly break apart. In an instant the room is flooded with light.
You're tired, but determined. Little by little you stretch and twist,
and suddenly the walls of the room fall away. You find yourself snuggled
against a warm tummy and some hard round shapes. But one of them suddenly
falls apart, and suddenly you're right next to a bald, wet, little baby
oriole. A baby oriole just like you!
Look at these
oriole eggs, and think about the magical process taking place inside each
one. Notice the shape. A few eggs, such as those of owls, are spherical,
but most are more "egg-shaped." Do you think this makes it easier
for the female when it's time to lay the eggs? Might that be the reason
why eggs have no squared or jagged edges?
Once oriole babies hatch, they're hungry!! The parents both feed them,
coming to the nest a total of about 13 times an hour from sunrise to sunset.
The babies grow from about 2 grams at hatching to about 34 grams when
they fledge,11-14 days later.
average weight of an oriole egg is 2.99 grams. The average weight
of the empty shell is 0.20 grams.
much does all the "stuff" inside the egg weigh?
a newly-hatched oriole weighs 2.00 grams, what do you think happened
to the other 0.79 grams? (Click
here for the answer)
assume it takes 12 days for a baby oriole to reach 34 grams in weight.
If an 8-pound human baby gained weight at the same rate, how much
would the human baby weigh in 12 days? (Click
here for the answer.)