56 elephants in 2 camps in TN tested for Covid

Chennai: Close on the heels of nine lions testing positive for Covid-19 in Vandalur zoo in Chennai, swab tests were carried out on 56 elephants on Tuesday at two camps in Coimbatore and Nilgiris districts.

Forest Minister K Ramachandran personally monitored the process at Kozhikmudi camp in Topslip in the district, where 28 elephants underwent the test.

Ramachandran has ordered to check the Covid in all animals accommodated in zoos in Tamilnadu and the Kumki elephants in the Mudumalai elephant camps. He said that if the animals test positive for Covid, they should be isolated first and given treatment.

Dr K Rajesh Kumar, forest veterinarian, Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, said, “Most of the elephants cooperated . This is a screening process and none of them is suspected to have the virus.”

He added that they didn’t have to sedate the elephants or that would have caused a huge strain on the animal.

A total of 60 mahouts and assistants and their family members got vaccinated. It may be recalled that a lioness at the Arignar Anna Zoological Park at Vandalur in Chennai died due to coronavirus on Thursday, and nine of the 11 in the park tested positive for Covid-19.


NT Bureau