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Australian zoo uses matchsticks, glue to replace feather of injured cockatoo

Editor: zhenglimin 丨Xinhua

04-07-2017 14:37 BJT

SYDNEY, April 7 (Xinhua) -- A team of veterinarians at a zoo in the Australian city of Perth have used matchsticks and glue to repair the wings of an endangered Carnaby's cockatoo.

The bird was injured after coming into contact with a power line last month, and while another bird in the same incident blew up, the bird suffered severe burns and was rushed to the Perth Zoo for treatment.

Veterinarians at the zoo performed a technique called "imping", which involves using superglue and matchsticks to construct new wings, while removing the burnt tissue, in an attempt to ensure the bird can fly.

One of the vets, Dr. Peter Ricci, told local media on Friday that the method of fixing the wings is quite common for wild birds and those who have had their wings clipped too short by overzealous owners.

"It's a pretty basic procedure, we use pretty basic tools. The trick is to get the feather in the right place and the right angles before the glue dries, so there's a little bit of tricky work to getting the features in place, but it's not rocket science," Ricci said.

"We have got dead tissue that was once alive and that the body has produced, and we are trimming that and just regluing it onto another part of the dead tissue...so in essence, it's just like hair extensions on people."

The bird once recovered will be moved to a black cockatoo sanctuary, with hopes of it being re-released into the wild.

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