On November 5, 2021, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) announced confirmation of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) in two spotted hyenas at a zoo in Colorado. These are the first hyenas confirmed with the SARS-CoV-2 virus worldwide.
Samples from a variety of species at the zoo, including the hyenas, were collected and tested after lions at the facility showed signs of illness. In addition to the two hyenas, eleven lions and two tigers at the zoo also tested positive for the virus.
USDA will announce cases of confirmed SARS-CoV-2 in animals each time the virus is found in a new species. Confirmed cases in animals are posted at https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/sa_one_health/sars-cov-2-animals-us.