Injured pet chicken gets 3D-printed leg designed by 8th-grade class

Students in Pennsylvania designed a prosthetic leg for a pet chicken and made it using a 3D...
Students in Pennsylvania designed a prosthetic leg for a pet chicken and made it using a 3D printer. (Source: WNEP/CNN)(GIM)
Published: May. 11, 2019 at 2:08 AM EDT
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An injured chicken is back on two feet, and it's all thanks to some eighth-grade students in Pennsylvania.

Their teacher heard one of the students discussing her injured pet chicken, and she decided to turn the search for a solution into a class project.

Nearly a year old, the blue Silkie chicken – appropriately named “Blue” – is walking again with the help of her new 3D-printed prosthetic leg.

Students from the East Lycoming School District helped design it.

"She's my sidekick," said eighth-grade student Briannah Miller, Blue’s owner.

A raccoon broke into the chicken coop outside Miller’s home last fall. Several chickens died. Blue survived, but her leg was injured.

With help from their teacher Brandi Dillon, students in Dillon’s STEM class used the design tool Tinkercad and a 3D printer to create their own designs for Blue.

"It's really amazing – cool technology," said Angela Miller, Briannah's mother.

Angela Miller stopped by the school with Blue to let the students see their work in action.

"I thought it was amazing, just knowing that what I did was able to help something," said eighth-grader Trynaty Gehr.

As for Briannah, she’s glad her friend is doing better.

"She's different from all the rest of the chickens, and I feel like I'm different from a lot of the people in my grade,” she said. “So, we’re all trying to fit in, so I feel like we’re pretty close."

The school hopes to continue making adjustments to Blue’s new leg.

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