India’s Chennai zoo officials on toes after 5 ostriches die due to ‘unknown’ illness

Written By: Sidharth MP WION
Chennai Published: Oct 28, 2021, 04:02 PM(IST)

(File photo) Arignar Anna Zoological Park Photograph:( Agencies )

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The zoo is home to 32 ostriches, of which five have succumbed to an illness, which is currently unknown, according to officials

Zoo officials in India’s southern Chennai city are monitoring the captive birds after five ostriches suddenly died on Wednesday, with a couple of more not keeping well.

Zoo officials the Arignar Anna Zoological Park (AAZP) near Chennai maintained that “five ostriches died all of a sudden on October 27.

The zoo is home to 32 ostriches, of which five have succumbed to an illness, which is currently unknown, according to officials.

In-house vets and teams from the Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University arrived at the zoo to provide treatment to the sick ostriches, even as examination of bacteriology, virology and toxicology samples are also being carried out. 

Also read | After lioness, a lion succumbs to COVID-19 at Chennai zoo

Officials have ruled out the possibility of a fowl cholera infection, based on the blood smear and organ impression procedures carried out on Wednesday. Other birds are also under surveillance and are being continuously monitored, officials added. 

Also read | Chennai Zoo Lions infected with Delta variant of COVID-19, reveals genome sequencing

A lioness, aged 19, had died in the Zoo owing to old-age issues on Tuesday. 

The zoo houses 2,400 animals with 180 different species, thus making it among the largest zoos in India.

Earlier this year, the zoo made headlines during the COVID-19 outbreak after 10 Asiatic lions, out of 15, tested for the virus’ delta variant, at a time when India was reeling under the severe second wave of the pandemic.

However, the zoo lost two lions, a male and a female, to the virus.

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