For me, spring is all about eggs – blowing them, carving them, selling them! This year I have returned to a reliable source for the rare and exquisite Tinamou eggs that have been a favorite of mine since I first discovered them several years ago. My eggs come from a breeder in Chile, where these once wild birds are now being raised domestically for meat. Their shells have a striking glass like shine. Elegant-crested Tinamous lay deep green eggs while another member of the species, the Chilean Brushland Tinamou, lays purple/brown/black eggs.
Tinamous are ratites, one of the most ancient of all living bird families. This group includes the giant flightless fowl: ostrich, emu, and rhea. The natural habitat of the birds that lay the black eggs I carve is the high-altitude scrubland of central Chile. Tinamou hens lay dark glossy eggs in open nests but it is the male Tinamou that incubates the eggs and raises the chicks. Despite their drab feather color, these porcelain-like eggs outshine all others in the world of birds!