Injured Eagle Given Bionic Beak (VIDEO)

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A bald eagle whose beak was shattered after being shot by a poacher has been saved by a prosthetic beak created with a 3D printer.

Beauty the Bald Eagle was found starving to death in Alaska in 2005. Her upper beak was smashed and she was attempting to eat with just one half of the stump.

Moved to the Birds of Prey Northwest, a charity in Idaho, she was nursed back to health but experts said she should be put down, her injuries being too severe.

But according to a documentary made in 2008 - and just released on Vimeo - specialist Jane Fink Cantwell refused to give up, and was contacted in the nick of time by Nate Calvin, a mechanical engineer who designed a new beak with the aid of a computer.

The prosthetic beak was eventually fitted using a complex titanium mount, which still requires constant adjustment and refitting.

Beauty is not able to return to the wild because the beak is not secure enough - but she can feed herself and preen her feathers.

In a recent email to SciLogs, the bird's carer said she "continues to thrive".

"Time will tell whether she goes through life with or without a beak," said Cantwell.

"In the meantime, she will remain in north Idaho under my care where she is cherished and well cared for."