Asiatic lions test positive for SARS-CoV2 virus in Hyderabad zoo
Part of: GS Prelims and GS – III – Biodiversity; Sci & tech; Conservation
- Based on reports by CCMB-LaCONES, it has now been confirmed that eight Asiatic lions housed in Nehru Zoological Park (NZP), Hyderabad have tested positive for SARS-CoV2 virus.
Important value additions
- LaCONES or Laboratory for the Conservation of Endangered Species, is a Council of Scientific and Industrial Research lab located in Hyderabad.
- It is a part of CCMB (centre for cellular and molecular biology).
- It was conceptualised by Lalji Singh.
- It is India’s only research facility engaged in conservation and preservation of wildlife and its resources.
- This lab strives to promote excellence in conservation biotechnology and serve for conservation of endangered wildlife in India.
- It was established in 1998 with the help of Central Zoo Authority of India, CSIR and the government of Andhra Pradesh.
- It was dedicated to the nation in 2007 by then President of India APJ Abdul Kalam.
- It is a Panthera leo population in India.
- Its current range is restricted to the Gir National Park and environs in the Indian state of Gujarat.
- It is one of five pantherine cats inhabiting India. Others are:
- Bengal tiger
- Indian leopard
- Snow leopard
- Clouded leopard
- It is also known as the “Indian lion” and the “Persian lion”.
- Listed in Schedule I of Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972
- Appendix I of CITES
- Endangered on IUCN Red List.
- It is slightly smaller than African lions.
- The most striking morphological character is a longitudinal fold of skin running along the belly of Asiatic Lions.