MILL CREEK TOWNSHIP, Pa. — A chicken is about to get a new lease on life thanks to a group of eighth graders.
An accident left Blue the chicken with one leg
Now students in Lycoming County are using their school’s 3D printer to build him a new one.
Steven Miller, 10, wakes up early to feed his chickens outside his home near Montoursville.
The Miller family owns over a dozen ducks and chickens, but only one lives in their home.
Blue is a 6-month-old blue Silkie chicken with one leg.
“He just hops around all the time instead of being able to walk to get to places easier,” said eighth grader Briannah Miller.
This past fall, a raccoon broke into the coop. Several of the birds were killed and Blue hurt her leg.
“After a few times of wrapping it, it fell off, which of course that was the day I unwrapped it and I almost threw up,” Briannah recalled.
“It was awful,” said Angela Miller. ”I was really mad and upset because I don’t like to see my chickens get hurt because they are a part of our family.”
Angela Miller heard about a duck who had a prosthetic leg made for it using a 3D printer. She knew her daughter’s school had a 3D printer, so she reached out to Hughesville High School for help.
Blue won’t be wobbling around for much longer. Thanks to a group of eighth graders, she’s about to get a new prosthetic leg.
“A lot of the projects we do in here, they create and they can be applied to real life, but this is something they actually get to see it outside of the classroom and they see it in action,” said teacher Brandi Dillon.
Dillon’s eighth grade STEM class has been working to design Blue a 3D printed prosthetic leg.
“At first, I thought it was kind of funny that we were going to make a prosthetic chicken leg,” said eighth grader Mason Hoppes.
Mason showed us his design.
“As we started doing it, I thought it was kind of smart to help it out,” Mason said.
Hoppes and a few other students’ designs are now on their way to the Miller’s home.
“I can’t wait to get them to see how she walks with it and so that she can be out with rest of the chickens again,” Angela said.
Students now hope to meet Blue before the school year ends.