Indonesia investigates how 2 Sumatran tigers got Covid-19

(Update 1: adds info on Covid-19 restrictions, infections)

Jakarta, Aug 2 (EFE).- Indonesian authorities began an investigation on Monday into how two Sumatran tigers – a critically endangered species – at a zoo in Jakarta came to be infected with Covid-19.

The two tigers, a 12-year-old female and a 9-year-old male, showed shortness of breath and loss of appetite and were tested for Covid-19 in mid-July, which yielded a positive result, the head of management of Ragunan Zoo, Endah Rumiyati, told EFE on Monday.

The zoo official said that the doctors who analyzed the samples discovered that it “was not an active virus.”

“So this possibility is still being explored whether it can still be transmitted to humans or not,” she added.

The authorities had revealed on Sunday that the tigers recovered from the coronavirus after spending some two weeks under treatment, and were under observation.

An investigation has been launched to try to determine how the animals, who began to display symptoms of the virus while the zoo was closed following the latest Covid-19 outbreak in Indonesia, became infected.

According to the authorities, none of the caretakers or workers at the zoo were sick during the period in which the tigers were infected.

Indonesia is facing its worst wave of Covid-19 infections, linked to the highly contagious Delta variant.

The worst affected by the virus in Southeast Asia, Indonesia has recorded a total of 3.44 million cases, including 95,723 deaths, since the start of the pandemic.

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