Summer’s project focuses on prosthetics for chickens

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Summer Farrelly has a passion for chickens and is conducting a very special project to help her feathered friends.
Photo: Facebook

Summer Farrelly is taking her passion for chickens to the classroom, with her latest project focused on creating prosthetic limbs for her injured feathered friends.

The 12-year-old Bundaberg girl said she had taken on the project as part of her STEM studies of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

“My STEM project consists of three parts,” she said.

“The first is a study of Location v Frostbite, investigating if USA chicken owners have more frostbite instances depending on which location, in which they live.

“I’m also creating prosthetic feet for five chicken case studies.

“Then, I will be creating a chicken limb data base that, hopefully in time, others will be able to access.”

Summer working on the prosthetic limbs.
Summer working on the prosthetic limbs. Photo: Facebook

Chickens make great friends

Summer's interest in chickens first came about a few years ago when she decided to create her own non for profit community program called Chickens to Love- Therapeutic Chickens.

As a young girl learning to manage autism, Summer found chickens to be the perfect friend.

“I co-wrote a therapeutic chicken program using companion chickens because I believe everyone should be loved, feel loved and valued,” she said.

Summer is now continuing with her endeavours in her Year 7 class at Capricornia School of Distant Education.

“I believe just like people, animals deserve a quality of life,” she said.

Prosthetic feet idea

So how did Summer’s idea of creating prosthetic limbs for chickens come about?

It was all to do with a chance encounter and a story about frost bite.

“Late last year I attended a 3D workshop with Steph Piper, a 3D mentor from Toowoomba, and after the first 10 minutes I was hooked,” Summer said.

“Through social media I learnt about the American rooster Jack Frost and his 16-year-old owner Molly; Jack lost both his feet though frost bite.”

Summer said from that moment, she decided Jack needed feet.

With the help of Ms Piper, ICT Analyst and technology sorcerer Emerson Ysayama and Damien Tracey from Community Lifestyle Support, her project started to become a reality.

Jack the Rooster has been trialling his new prosthetic feet thanks to Summer and her invention.

How can you help?

“I am asking local poultry breeders for donations of recently deceased, disease free chickens, so I can scan their legs into my data base using a 3D turntable scanner,” Summer said.

“Even though the prosthetics are moulded off stump casts it would be handy to have an idea about the chicken’s leg position and structure related to their particular breed.”

To get in contact with Summer, message her Facebook page here.

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