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Santa Barbara Zoo is taking precaution amid pandemic

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Posted at 11:53 PM, Apr 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-08 02:53:19-04

The Santa Barbara Zoo has been proactive about protecting their staff and animals from the coronavirus outbreak.

Prior to a tiger contracting COVID-19 at the Bronx Zoo in New York, the Santa Barbara Zoo staff have been taking extra precautions around all of their mammals.

Staff have been using extra personal protective equipment -- wearing face masks and gloves or protective clothing -- as precautions to limit the risk of transmitting the virus.

They are also keeping their distance from animals that are the most susceptible when possible.

"Morale is still really great with our keepers," said Dr. Julie Barnes, Vice President of Animal Care and Health at the Santa Barbara Zoo. "At the end of the day, what they are most concerned about is keeping our animals healthy -- and so if stepping back a little bit from the animal is what is necessary to do that, then they're more than happy to do it."

Barnes says that the animals at the zoo have adjusted to the changes quickly.