Zoo Atlanta Gorillas Test Positive For COVID-19
Zoo Atlanta shared the news on Friday that several of its lowland gorillas have come down with COVID-19.
"Gorilla Care Team members observed coughing, nasal discharge, and minor changes in appetite in several members of the gorilla population," the zoo said in a statement. "Upon the onset of these signs, the Animal Care and Veterinary Teams immediately pursued testing for SARS-CoV-2."
The zoo sent test samples to the the Athens Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory at the University of Georgia, where they tested presumptively positive.
The zoo is waiting for a secondary test to confirm the results at National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa.
The gorillas are being treated with monoclonal antibodies. The zoo believes that an asymptomatic COVID-positive staff member may have infected the animals.
The zoo was already on standby to receive and use doses of Zoetis, a vaccine made specifically for animals who could be receptive to COVID-19. The zoo said it's now instituting new safety measures.