Covid levels among Britain’s deer are being closely monitored after high levels were detected among US herds.
Scientists in the US are, allegedly, unearthing increasing evidence that the virus is able to spread and mutate freely among the species.
Although Covid cases have not been identified in European deer, experts agree that it wouldn’t be surprising if it did turn up given high rates among humans.
MSN reports: One study in Canada has even found what may be the first case of the virus jumping from a deer to a human.
Separate investigations have shown the virus is able to spread among white-tailed deers in the US, with up to 40% of animals tested in one such trial turning out to be positive.
Genomic sequencing has confirmed that, not only do new variants spread to the species as they explode in human populations, they continue to evolve among their new hosts.
According to a report in Nature, in 30 of the states where the animal has been tested for Covid-19, 24 have revealed some level of infection.
There’s no evidence Covid-19 is circulating in British deer but they are one of a number of species which are being monitored closely.
A task force set up last year by the Animal and Plant Health Agency is regularly checking for infections among several animal populations, including foxes, mink, badgers and bats, as well as deer.