According to the latest findings, some animals belong to the risk group for COVID-19.

One of them is a tiger.

The Korkeasaari staff will keep their distance to tigers as a coronavirus precaution. Picture: Annika Sorjonen

In Korkeasaari Zoo, located on Korkeasaari island in Helsinki, home to numerous tigers, the staff is now keeping a distance of 1,5-2 meters to the big cats. “The disease-carrying may be temporary, and it’s likely that animals belonging to the cat family don’t spread the virus significantly enough to infect humans,” said veterinarian Sanna Sainmaa of Korkeasaari Zoo in an interview with Finnish tabloid Ilta-Sanomat.

As a precautionary measure, the staff is also keeping their distance to the numerous monkeys on the island. According to Ilta-Sanomat, Japanese macaques, for example, are known to be able to contract the coronavirus.

Korkeasaari is home to numerous macaques, and while it’s still uncertain how COVID-19 spreads among monkeys, the caretakers will keep their distance to them, too.

So far, there are no confirmed coronavirus infections among the zoo staff nor among the animals, but according to the zoo, should a need arise, they have the capability to test the animals and send the samples to an animal laboratory in Germany.

Korkeasaari Zoo was closed earlier as a coronavirus precaution.

Tony Öhberg