Huizai (Chinese for Grey Boy) – A palm cockatoo just had its life changed by the technological wonders of today. Living in the Nanjing Zoo in Jiangsu, China, Huizai the parrot was about to lose its beak and its respect from the peers after sustaining damage during a fight with another parrot. According to one of Huizai’s keepers, Chen Wei, the cracks just kept getting worse after the fight and eventually most of the beak started to fall off.
Huizai was losing its appetite and its confidence as well. According to Chen’s interview at China Daily, “The beak is very important to a parrot’s appearance. Huizai knew that it was different from the others and gradually preferred to stay alone. Sometimes it even refused to come out of its cage.”
With a damaged beak, Huizai was regarded as “less of a bird”, this worried the keepers and they started looking for help for the palm cockatoo. Vets and researchers at the Nanjing Research Institute of Additive Manufacturing were approached for help.
Cheng Wangkum, one of the vets, explained that a 3D company offered to donate and help the Cockatoo for free.
Another parrot of the same species and health status was chosen and used for reference in the building of the beak. A comfortable resin beak was created by the company.
The surgery was performed under anesthesia and 11 bone nails were placed to fixate the new resin beak on the Huizai’s original damaged beak.
Huizai went through a successful recovery after the surgery and took a liking to its brand new beak just like the original one. It is safe to say that the pride and respect of the Cockatoo was preserved due to this technological advance. The eating and drinking routine of the Parrot is back to normal.
The New 3D printed resin beak has once again made the Huizai accepted among its peers.