Birds need to sit on their eggs if they want them to hatch, as the tiny embryos need warmth and protection. The same went for prehistoric reptiles, but can you imagine hatching dinosaur eggs without the massive monsters squashing them? A recent study developed by researchers from the University of Calgary discovered that dinosaurs used a different technique that kept the eggs safe.
Dinosaurs arranged their eggs in spiral formations
Incubation is essential for any egg. This process basically consists of the birds sitting on their eggs and keeping them warm until they hatch. Birds can easily do this without squashing the eggs but, throughout history, there have been bigger animals that had to bring their eggs to hatching.
If you think of the process in a classical manner, you might say dinosaur eggs were in great danger. However, researchers discovered the massive lizards adopted a completely different technique. This way, they could avoid squashing the eggs and keep their young ones safe.
It turns out dinosaurs arranged their eggs around themselves in a spiral shape. All formations depended on the actual size of the dinosaurs, so there were various shapes and sizes of each egg arrangement. Researchers discovered this phenomenon when they stumbled upon 40 dinosaur nests. These contained eggs fossilized in interesting formations that belonged to bird-like species, oviraptorosaurs.
The strange formation might have had a different purpose
Each nest had a different shape and appearance. Some of them were small and the dinosaur eggs were crowded against each other, while others had plenty of space. This means that dinosaurs of all sizes adopted this formation without crushing their eggs.
This doesn’t really resemble bird nests, so things might be really different here. Birds sit on their eggs for warmth, but dinosaurs might have done it with something else in mind. The strange formation of the nests might mean they were more interested in protecting the eggs.
The study on dinosaur eggs was published in the journal Biology Letters.
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