Five ostriches in the Arignar Anna Zoological Park (AAZP), popularly known as the Vandalur zoo in Chennai, died suddenly on Wednesday, October 27, prompting stepped-up surveillance of the birds and monitoring of the other animals in enclosures, the AAZP said on Thursday, October 28. Also, a lioness named Kavitha (19) died of age-related ailments on October 26, the zoo said.
â€śOstrich was breeding well naturally in AAZP. Five ostriches died all of a sudden on October 27. A team from Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (TANUVAS), along with the zoo veterinarians, was present during prophylactic treatment to the remaining birds in ostrich enclosure and during the postmortem,â€ť a press release from the director of AAZP said. Samples were collected for bacteriology, virology and toxicology examinations which are being carried out, said the release.
Blood smear and organ impression were examined on Wednesday and fowl cholera was ruled out. Other birds are under surveillance and zoo veterinarians are continuously monitoring the remaining birds in the enclosures, the director said. One lioness Kavitha, aged 19, died due to senility and age-related issues on October 26 and postmortem was conducted by zoo veterinarians and a team from TANUVAS, the release further said.
The Vandalur Zoo houses about 2,400 animals belonging to 180 species. In June this year, a nine-year-old lioness named Neela and a 12-year-old lion, Padmanaban, died after testing positive for the coronavirus at the zoo. Subsequently, the zoo officials sent samples of 11 lions for COVID-19 tests, out of which nine, including Neela, tested positive for the virus. The officials further sent the results to check whether Neela died of COVID-19. However, it showed that Neela also had Canine Distemper Virus (CDV).
The lions which tested positive were monitored by a special task force formed by the Tamil Nadu government.Lions had also tested positive for the same variant in Hyderabad and Jaipur,before cases were reported in the Vandalur zoo. However, all for them recovered quickly.
With Inputs from IANS and PTI