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Tiger at Bronx Zoo tests positive for COVID-19

Bronx zoo tiger positive for COVID-19
Posted at 4:38 PM, Apr 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-06 20:49:58-04

NEW YORK — A 4-year-old tiger at the Bronx Zoo has tested positive for coronavirus.

Nadia, the female Malayan tiger, her sister, two Amur tigers and three African lions had developed a dry cough and all are expected to recover, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society.

The Bronx Zoo's Chief Veterinarian Dr. Paul Calle said the COVID-19 testing done on Nadia "was performed in a veterinary school laboratory and is not the same test as is used for people."

"You cannot send human samples to the veterinary laboratory, and you cannot send animal tests to the human laboratories, so there is no competition for testing between these very different situations," Dr. Calle said.

All of the cats are still bright, alert and interactive with their keepers, though they experienced some decrease in appetite, zoo officials said.

They were infected by a person caring for them, according to WCS. Preventative measures are now in place for all staff caring for cats at WCS zoos.