Skip to main content
  1. News
  2. Science & Space

World’s oldest bird eggshells found in Japan

See also

The world’s oldest bird eggshells have been verified by Yoichi Azuma, professor of paleontology at Fukui Prefectural University’s Dinosaur Research Institute, and colleagues according to a March 18, 2014, article at the Asahi Shimbum website.

The three shells were originally found in 1990 in Katsuyama in Fukui Prefecture, Japan.

The eggs range in size from two millimeters in circumference to six millimeters in circumference and date to the Cretaceous Period about 120 million yeasr ago.

The eggshells are 0.4 millimeters thick and have three distinct layers.

The conclusion that the fossils are bird eggs is based on the size and shape of the eggs, the thickness of the shell, the material that makes up the shells, and the fact that over 30 fossilized bird foot prints have been found in the same area.

The scientists cannot identify the species of bird that laid the eggs because there is no fossilized organic matter accompanying the shells and the sizes of the shells indicate that no bones had developed in the bird embryo at the time the eggs were broken.

This is the first hard evidence that true birds existed as far back as 120 million years ago and is expected to provide new insights into how birds lived, ate, bred, and nested in the Cretaceous Period.

The fossils were not recognized as bird eggs when they were first discovered.



  •  Day 17
    Israel continues their ravaging bombardment on Gaza as the conflict wages on
  • MH17 victims arrive home
    40 bodies of the MH17 plane crash return to a somber homecoming in Holland
    Top News
  • Military advisers to Ukraine
    President Obama announces the deployment of military advisers to Ukraine
  • Bubonic plague in China
    A bubonic plague outbreak in Yumen prompts China to quarantine the city
    World News
  • Air Algierie disappearance
    A flight headed from Burkina Faso to Algeria disappears from radar over Mali
  • Windows Phone training portal
    Microsoft launches Windows Phone training portal in attempt to woo consumers

Related Videos:

  • Buzz Aldrin and the American flag on the moon
    <iframe width="420" height="315" src="//;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>
  • Orbital Sciences rocket brings supplies and experiments to space station
    <div class="video-info" data-id="518318477" data-param-name="playList" data-provider="5min" data-url=""></div>
  • Liftoff Apollo 11
    <iframe width="420" height="315" src="//;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>