Some gorillas at the Atlanta Zoo, in the southern state of Georgia, United States, tested positive for covod-19, the zoo itself reported, AFP reports.
The primates were examined after their caretakers saw them coughing and noticed other symptoms, which is why they proceeded to examine the 20 gorillas at the zoo, the report said.
“The teams are closely monitoring the affected gorillas and we look forward to their full recovery. They are receiving the best possible care, ”said Sam Rivera, director of Zoo Atlanta.
The center's authorities assure that the sanitary protocols applied to work with apes and other susceptible animal species during the pandemic "have been extremely rigorous," he added. However, it is estimated that the gorillas were infected by an asymptomatic caregiver despite being vaccinated and wearing protective sanitary equipment.
"Although humans can transmit the virus to animals such as gorillas, and this has happened in other zoos, there is no data to indicate that zoo animals can transmit the virus to humans," the zoo said.
In any case, he added that there is no possibility of a threat of contagion to humans due to the distance that separates the public from the primate habitat.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that 13 gorillas were infected, including Ozzie, the oldest female gorilla in captivity.
Zoo Atlanta said it allowed the application of the Zoetis Covid vaccine developed for animals and will inoculate the Gorillas when they recover.
He also indicated that he will vaccinate orangutans, Sumatran tigers, African lions and leopards.
Domestic cats and dogs have been infected with covid.