A group of gorillas have tested positive for Covid at San Diego Zoo, which likely makes them them first captive primates to contract the disease.
The gorillas are thought to have been infected by a wildlife worker. The zoo is currently closed to the public.
The group of eight gorillas live together, with several experiencing coughing symptoms. Two of the gorillas have tested positive while three were symptomatic.
San Diego Zoo confirmed the news after testing the for Covid-19 by using fecal samples.
“Aside from some congestion and coughing, the gorillas are doing well,” said Lisa Peterson, the zoo’s executive director. “The troop remains quarantined together and are eating and drinking. We are hopeful for a full recovery.”
The gorillas are being given vitamins, fluid and food but no specific treatment for Covid.
Other captive zoo animals have tested positive to date, with large cats the most common to contract Covid. A Malayan tiger at Bronx Zoo in New York tested positive last April while several others in Tennessee had to be quarantined after displaying mild coughing.
Covid confirmed in wild animals
The first confirmed case of Coronavirus in a wild animal has been reported in Utah, America last month.
The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said a wild mink had tested positive for Coronavirus close to an infected mink farm in Utah.
Coronavirus outbreaks at fur farms in America and in Europe have killed thousands of animals.
As a result of that, millions more farmed mink have been put down across Europe.
The USDA said the positive Coronavirus animal was a “free-ranging, wild mink.”