Pangolin in Odisha to undergo COVID-19 test

Pangolin rescued from Odisha quarantine centre to undergo COVID-19 test

A pangolin rescued by the forest department from a quarantine centre in Odisha's Cuttack district will undergo COVID-19 test, an official said.

The swab samples of the pangolin have been collected for the coronavirus test, the official said on Tuesday.

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The pangolin was rescued by the personnel of Athagarh forest division in Cuttack from a quarantine centre at a school at Mahulia following a tip-off from a village head.

Athagarh divisional forest officer Sasmita Lenka said the female pangolin which is aged around five years was rescued from a quarantine centre and it has been decided to send its swab sample for Covid-19 testing before releasing it into the wild, Lenka said.

The Centre for Wildlife Health in Bhubaneswar was contacted to facilitate the process, she said adding that efforts are on to ascertain how the pangolin found its way into the quarantine centre.

The swab samples of the animal will be sent to a designated laboratory where tests for COVID-19 are being conducted, an official said.

The test on the scaly anteater is significant as studies claim that the coronavirus which causes Covid-19 could be a recombination of viruses found in pangolins and bats. 

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