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Toucan to receive prosthetic beak after youth attack

Last updated on October 24, 2017

A toucan in Costa Rica is set to be fitted for a new prosthetic beak after being brutally attacked by a group of youths.

The male toucan, who suffered the loss of the upper part of its beak, is being helped by four Costa Rican companies who have volunteered their skills to create the prosthetic beak.

They say they will use 3D printing to create the first beak of its kind in the region. In the US, prosthetic beaks have been successfully created for a penguin and an eagle.

Photos of the militated bird caused public outrage when the story circulated on social media and throughout Costa Rican newspapers.

A fundraising campaign was set up which quickly raised the thousands of dollars needed for a new beak. It also caught the attention and support of several local companies including Elementos 3d, Ewa!corps, Publicidad Web and Grupo Sommerus who are confident they can design a suitable beak for Grecia. 

The toucan, who has since been named Grecia after the area where it was found, was taken to an animal rescue center in January.

Carmen Soto, the veterinarian who looks after Grecia at the Zoo Ave rescue center, said the bird was recovering well and has begun eating on his own. “The quantity he manages to eat on his own is very small, so we have to help him.”

Toucans use their beaks to eat and also to regulate their body temperature.


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