Two hippos test positive for Covid at Antwerp zoo

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Staff said two hippos at Belgium’s Antwerp Zoo have tested positive for Covid-19, which may be the first reported cases in the species.

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Imani, 14, and Hermione, 41, have no symptoms other than a runny nose, but the zoo said they have been placed in quarantine as a precaution.


“To my knowledge, this is the first time in this species. Worldwide, this virus has been reported mainly in great apes and cats,” said zoo veterinarian Francis Werkmann.

The coronavirus is believed to have jumped from an animal to a human, and it is proved that it has also passed from humans to animals.

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Pets, including cats, dogs and ferrets, have become infected through contact with their owners, and zoo cases have been reported in big cats, otters, primates, and hyenas.

The disease has also spread to mink farms and wild animals such as deer.
The Antwerp Zoo is investigating the cause of the outbreak. It added that none of the zookeepers had recently shown symptoms of COVID or tested positive for the virus.

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