Asia

Hornbill gets 3D-printed prosthetic casque after cancer

The Hornbill in its wildlife park home Image copyright Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Jary, a captive hornbill in Singapore, has been given a 3D-printed prosthetic bill after surgery to remove cancerous tissue.

In July, staff at Jurong Bird Park noticed an 8cm gash on the 22-year-old male Great Pied Hornbill's casque and suspected the bird might be suffering from cancer.

Much of the casque tissue had been destroyed by the cancer Image copyright Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Much of the tissue under Jary's casque had been destroyed by the disease.

The outlook was bleak - of two previous hornbill cancer cases at the park, one bird died after chemotherapy while the other's cancer had progressed too far for treatment.

Jary the hornbill undergoes a scan Image copyright Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Jary underwent a scan...

The hornbill undergoes a biopsy Image copyright Wildlife Reserves Singapore

... and a biopsy of the cancer-affected tissue was taken.

Analysis of the biopsy confirmed it was cancer and surgeons decided to remove all the cancerous growth.

A prosthetic casque was made Image copyright Wil;dlife Reserves Singapore

A complete new prosthetic casque was printed for Jary.

Dr Hsu Li Chieh removes the hornbill’s casque with an oscillating saw Image copyright Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Dr Hsu Li Chieh then removed Jary's casque with an oscillating saw.

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The Hornbill after surgery Image copyright Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Afterwards, dental resin was applied to the new casque to seal any gaps.

Jary after the surgery Image copyright Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Jary's new casque has since turned yellow after he coloured it using pigment from his yellow tail, zoo officials say.

The bird was given the name Jary because it means "helmeted warrior" in the ancient Norse language.

Jary is returned to his bird park Image copyright Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Jary the hornbill was discharged from hospital in September. His prosthesis will remain until he grows a new casque.

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