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Coronavirus: Bronx Zoo tiger tests positive for COVID-19


A tiger at New York's Bronx Zoo has tested positive for the new coronavirus, in what's believed to be the primary known infection in an animal within the u. s. or a tiger anywhere within the world, federal officials and also the zoo said.

The four-year-old Malayan tiger named Nadia was among a bunch of six other animals to own also fallen ill, the Wildlife Conservation Society, which manages the zoo, said in an exceedingly statement on Sunday.
She was screened for the COVID-19 disease after developing a dry cough together with three other tigers and three lions, it said, adding that every one of the cats are expected to recover.

The test result stunned zoo officials: "I couldn't believe it," director Jim Breheny said.

The coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is believed to own spread from animals to humans, and some of animals have tested positive in urban center.

But officials believe this is often a singular case because Nadia became sick after exposure to an asymptomatic zoo employee, Paul Calle, chief veterinarian at The Bronx Zoo, told Reuters press association. Calle said they didn't know which employee infected the tiger.

"This is that the first time that any people know of anywhere within the world that someone infected the animal and also the animal got sick," Calle said, adding that they planned to share the findings with other zoos and institutions. "Hopefully we'll all have a more robust understanding as a result."

Transmission in animals
The first tiger at the zoo, which has been shut since mid-March, began showing signs of illness on March 27, in line with the US Department of Agriculture, which performed the test at its veterinary lab.

Nadia underwent X-rays, an ultrasound and blood tests to undertake to work out what was ailing her. They decided to check for COVID-19 given the surge in cases in big apple City, the epicentre of the outbreak within the US.

While other tigers and lions were also exhibiting symptoms, the zoo decided to check only Nadia because she was the sickest and had began to lose her appetite, and that they didn't want to subject all the cats to anaesthesia, Calle said.

"The tigers and lions weren't terribly sick," he said.

The finding raises new questions about the transmission of the virus in animals.

The US Department of Agriculture said there are not any known cases of the virus in US pets or livestock.

“There doesn’t appear to be, at now, any evidence that means that the animals can spread the virus to people or that they will be a source of the infection within the u. s.," Jane Rooney, a veterinarian and a USDA official, said in an interview.

The coronavirus outbreaks round the world are driven by person-to-person transmission, experts say.

There are some of reports outside the US of pet dogs or cats becoming infected after close contact with contagious people, including a urban center dog that tested positive for an occasional level of the pathogen in February and early March.

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