#parent | #kids | Gorillas at San Diego Zoo test positive for COVID-19 – Orange County Register

A pair of gorillas at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park have tested positive for COVID-19, and a third is symptomatic, in what scientists are investigating as a possible case of human-to-animal transmission, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Monday.

Gorilla Troop at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park Test Positive for COVID-19. The great apes continue to be observed closely by the San Diego Zoo Global veterinary team. (Courtesy of San Diego Zoo Global)

In a separate interview, the zoo’s executive director told the Associated Press all eight gorillas in its habitat, which is located just north of San Diego in Escondido, are suspected to be infected. In a news release, the zoo later confirmed an asymptomatic staff member was believed to be the source of the infection and said the great apes were expected to recover.

“Aside from some congestion and coughing, the gorillas are doing well,” Lisa Peterson, executive director of the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, said in a statement. “The troop remains quarantined together and are eating and drinking. We are hopeful for a full recovery.”

Newsom said the source of the outbreak was still under investigation as of Monday afternoon, but that the situation was developing in “real-time.” Additional testing was being done to determine the genetic sequencing of the virus, which could confirm the human-to-animal transmission.

“There is some question, did it come human to animal? That’s being determined, and one has to respect that process and the adjudication of the facts,” Newsom said during a Monday afternoon virtual news conference. “But nonetheless, that’s an area that’s long been of concern.”

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