Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Geek Rant: Chicken and the Egg

Every once in a while I will use this blog for my own particular quips, rants, and musings. This should come as a shock to none of you.

Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Its a long-debated question, though I always thought it was pretty simple. Clearly the egg must have come first because the chicken wasn't the first living egg-laying thing on the planet.

But then someone told me that they meant a chicken egg, and that sort of ended my line of reasoning.

Still, I assumed the egg came first. Along the evolutionary line, the chicken's genetic ancestor is the T-Rex (oh how the mighty have fallen indeed), and so at some point a very cold, short, and feathery T-Rex, after going through an evolutionary change over millions of years, laid the egg which resulted in the chicken. Thus, egg before chicken.

But now I hear I'm wrong again. Kotaku reports that the chicken came first after all, with scientists claiming that a certain protein found only in chickens is necessary to create the egg, meaning that the chicken must have come first.

This, I think, still raises some questions. Are we including the feathered squawking Tyrannosaurus Rex as a chicken? If not, then isn't it entirely possible that the chicken's descendant also had the necessary protein that would give it the ability to lay an egg? And if so, then does that not mean that the egg still came first?

See, this is why we need to make a real-life Jurassic Park, to solve great scientific questions like these.

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