10 things you never wanted to know about Ostrich Eggs.
1. Ostrich eggs vary in size depending on the variety of Ostrich Hen. African Black Ostrich lay the smallest of the eggs, approximately 5” wide x 6” long. The Blue Neck Ostrich lay a little bigger egg at 6”x 8” and the Red Neck Ostrich just slightly bigger than the Blue Neck.
2. The Hens lay eggs from about March through October and lay an egg every other day.
3. Think of a huge cement mixer traveling down the road with the cement tank turning. This is similar to an ostrich uterus. The egg arrives in the uterus and whether it is fertilized or not, the process of putting the shell around the egg begins. The egg turns over and over in the uterus for two days while the shell is being applied in layers of calcium.
4. Once the egg is laid it will take 42 days for a chick to hatch. These chicks weigh between 1 ½ lb. and 2 lbs. About the size of a small frying chicken. By 3 months of age they are 3-4 feet tall and at one year they reach heights of 8 feet.
5. You can eat ostrich eggs! Actually, you need to add some flavor because they are very bland. We have hard boiled Ostrich eggs (it takes a long time) and then used one half of the white, cut horizontally, as a serving bowl to hold the rest of the egg deviled for a cracker spread. We also used the egg in casseroles and scrambled for breakfast.
6. The Ostrich egg is equal to 1-2 dozen chicken eggs depending on the size of each.
7. The shell can be emptied by putting a hole in one end and shaking out the contents. We used a screw driver and hammer to poke out a hole, then a needle nose pliers to break away a little larger hole so the egg could be emptied in a reasonable amount of time.
8. The yolk is about the size of a soft ball.
9. Empty Ostrich eggs are used for crafts and fine arts. They are painted, carved or if it is a particularly pretty specimen, just displayed in its natural state. You can glue the egg to a large metal washer or a drapery ring for it to stand vertically. There are also many different stands that can be purchased.
10. The current Ostrich Egg market has the price between $15 per egg to over $100 per egg depending on quality. A perfect egg is shiny, smooth with no stains. A matte finish reduces the price somewhat.