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Extinct Avian Restored by 3D Scanning

The Dodo Bird is definitely extinct, but only in reality. It’s alive and well in the 3D world. 

Aves 3D, a service providing a “three dimensional database of avian skeletal morphology” is part of Harvard University’s Museum of Comparative Zoology. They’ve managed to 3D scan the single surviving complete skeleton of the avian, which has apparently been extinct since c.1700, most likely due to hungry sailors. 

The scarcity of actual skeletons could be resolved with the distribution of this 3D model, which could then enable museums or individuals to print replicas of the actual skeleton for research or display purposes. 

At the Aves 3D database, we see twenty-four different skeletal 3D models, which can be viewed in 3D online. However, there’s a problem. 

The models are all marked: “Download Digital Model: STL File Not Publicly Available”.

This is often the case. Interesting 3D models are captured, but not distributed. It’s possible Harvard University has a method of obtaining the right to use the 3D model in a contractual manner, but for most people, the model is as inaccessible as a live Dodo Bird. 

Via io9 and Aves3D

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