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Mutant Chicken Grows Alligator Choppers

from Sploid

Chickens can, apparently, grow teeth - if they're mutants.

A researcher at the University of Wisconsin recently discovered that a mutant chicken embryo had teeth like an alligator's.

Normal birds haven't had teeth for at least 70 million years.

In the past, scientists have caused chickens to grow mouse-molars or teeth that were quickly reabsorbed into the beak.

But this little chicky's teeth were not going away.

Biologist John Fallon explained that the chicken had "this conical, saber-shaped structure that is clearly a tooth. The other animal that has a tooth like that is an alligator."

Scientists theorize that birds lost their teeth in order to reduce weight and drag in flight. And when all you're eating is bird seed, who needs big choppers?

Matthew Harris, the man who discovered the new mutant chicken, said "the beak proves to be quite versatile" even when it isn't lined with fearsome alligator teeth.


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