While the sample of a lion, named Tripur, living in Jaipur zoo, has been found positive for Covid, the Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI) officials have said that sample reports of a panther, a white tiger and a lioness from Jaipur, were inconclusive.
IVRI Joint Director K.P. Singh said that there was a need to resample them.
The 13 animal samples received from Rajasthan’s capital include three lions, three tigers and one panther.
Singh said eight samples including, three tigers, one civet cat, one black buck received from Chhatbir Zoo in Punjab and one of a black buck in Bareilly had tested negative for the virus.
The IVRI official said that chain of transmission of the virus, could have taken place through asymptomatic human carriers like caretakers of animals.
Last week, two lionesses at the Etawah Safari Park in Uttar Pradesh, had tested positive for Covid.
Both the animals have been kept in isolation, said the park’s director.
Singh said that the safari park authorities have been advised to shift the infected animals in isolation. The safari park has already been shut for public.
The CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology had informed that eight Asiatic lions in the Hyderabad zoo have also tested positive for Covid.
The possibility of animals contracting Covid first came to light when a four-year-old female tiger ‘Nadia’ and six others, tested positive at Bronx Zoo in New York City in April last year. The animals got infected after getting exposed to an asymptomatic zookeeper.