Asiatic lions test positive for SARS-CoV2 virus in Hyderabad zoo

  • IASbaba
  • May 6, 2021
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Asiatic lions test positive for SARS-CoV2 virus in Hyderabad zoo

Part of: GS Prelims and GS – III – Biodiversity; Sci & tech; Conservation 

In news

  • 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.

Asiatic Lion

  • 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”. 
  • Status: 
    • 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.

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