A Belgian zoo loses two of its three koala's in less than a month

MEXICO CITY. One of the largest zoos in Belgium, Pairi Daiza Park, lost two of the three koala's in three weeks' time, arrived in 2016 from Australia, one of which was the victim of a "fulminating" virus, said the Zoo address this Tuesday.

"The two deaths have very different causes, there is no epidemic," said Aleksandra Vidanovski, spokesperson for the Belgian zoo, to AFP.

After death, apparently due to gastroenteritis, from Zelda, a second female koala named Carina died on Monday because of the Koala retrovirus, which is known to have decimated the species in Australia, where that animal is a symbol.

"Like almost all koala's, Carina was a carrier of the Koala retrovirus," the zoo said on her Facebook page.

"Koala retrovirus is similar to cat leukemia because it is viral and destructive, but it is present in the koala genome, making it impossible to make a vaccine and chemotherapy is not effective […] Science has not yet found an answer, "added the park.

According to the spokeswoman, the disease developed "fulminating" in Carina, because the first symptoms only appeared a few days ago.

Zelda and Carina arrived in the park in April 2016 together with Coco, the only surviving koala in the park, also a woman, as part of a cooperation program with an Australian breeding and protection center, the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary in Brisbane. Soon a fourth koala, man, according to Vidanovski would arrive.


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