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article imageTortoise gets a 3D-printed shell

By Owen Weldon     Mar 28, 2015 in Odd News
A leopard tortoise by the name of Cleopatra suffers from pyramiding. Her scrutes didn't grow evenly, and instead they formed structures that look like pyramids.
Cleopatra is vulnerable to other tortoises, due to her condition, and if she gets flipped over, she can find it difficult to get back to her right side. Also, she is susceptible to infections due to the holes that formed along the borders.
However, Cleoptra now has a protective outer shell that was created with a 3D printer. The outer shell was created by Roger Henry, a design student, and it took him around 600 hours of developing a design that would fit over the tortoise's shell. Once the design was developed, he then got to work on building it with a 3D printer. The shell fits perfectly on the Cleopatra's shell and it is lightweight, so she doesn't know it's there.
Henry said that he heard of how the tortoise was damaged and that it needed help. He said that creating the 3D shell felt like the right thing to do.
Before the tortoise got its new shell, it was taken in by animal rescue. Asides from the issues with its shell, it was malnourished.
Cleopatra has since been on a healthy diet, which includes cactus and dandelions. The diet combined with the new shell could end up leading to a rounder shell as time goes on. However, she will likely have to change prosthetic shells a few times over the next few years.
More about 3d printed, 3d, Tortoise, Shell
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