Toucan receives an 3D printed beak
A toucan in Costa Rica was brutally attacked by a group of teenagers. This left the bird mutilated and missing a big chunk of its beak. This incident received a lot of attention online very quickly, and people started donating money to the poor bird. Companies in the country have the ability to print the toucan a 3D beak. Scientist know that this procedure can be successful as prosthetic beaks have been fitted on an eagle and a penguin before. The wild bird is very popular in the town of Gracia. Locals would feed and play with him. The bird was also named after the town. A group of teenagers in the town started beating the bird with a piece of wood.
Gracia the toucan was brought to an animal rescue center in Alajuela and has been residing there ever since. Carmen Soto, the veterinarian looking after him, told BBC News that he has been recovering well despite his broken beak. He can eat a little bit on his own, but ultimately needs assistance. Once the story of Gracia spread across Latin America, a social media campaign was kicked-started by Luciano Lacayo. More than $7,000 was raised and smashed its $5,000 goal in less than 48 hours. The prosthetic beak will have a fixed part and a mobile part so it can be cleaned or replaced when needed. Before scans need to be made for in order to make the model, he has to recover. It is a possibility that the bird might not accept the replacement. Their beaks are used as thermoregulation tools and used in mate selection.