Coronavirus Hits Etawah Safari Park, 2 Lionesses Test COVID-19 Positive

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Etawah, May 8: Days after eight Asiatic lions in Hyderabad contracted coronavirus, two lionesses at the Etawah Lion Safari in Uttar Pradesh have tested positive for COVID-19. The Director of Etawah Lion Safari confirmed that two lionesses were found infected with coronavirus. Both of them have been kept in isolation. The safari houses 14 Asiatic lions and 12 of them have tested negative. COVID-19 Vaccine for Animals: Russia Registers 'World's First' Coronavirus Vaccine Carnivac-Cov for Dogs, Cats and Minks.

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Two female lions at the Etawah Safari Park were found infected with coronavirus after samples of the 14 Asiatic lions had been sent to the Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI) for RT-PCR tests for COVID-19. Speaking to news agency PTI, IVRI Joint Director Dr KP Singh said the lionesses may have contracted the virus through any asymptomatic human carrier, probably caretakers, working at the park.

The Etawah Lion Safari is already shut for the public. Earlier this week, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change said eight Asiatic lions at Hyderabad’s Nehru Zoological Park have tested positive for coronavirus. There are 12 lions in the 40-acre zoo. After the lions had shown COVID-19 symptoms like nasal discharge and coughing, samples were collected on April 14 and sent the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) for tests.

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Tests confirmed that eight lions had coronavirus. "The eight lions have been isolated and due care and necessary treatment has been provided. All the eight lions have responded well to the treatment and are recovering. They are behaving normally and eating well," the Ministry said.

Based on experience with zoo animals elsewhere in the world that have experienced SARS-COV2 positive last year, there is no factual evidence that animals can transmit the disease to humans any further, it stated.

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