Research: Red foxes infected with SARS-CoV-2
Here, we demonstrate that following experimental inoculation with SARS-CoV-2, red fox (Vulpes vulpes) become infected and can shed virus in oral and respiratory secretions.
All six of the red fox shed infectious virus both orally and nasally starting at 1 dpi. A majority of the red fox were still shedding virus at 3 dpi (4/6 oral, 5/6 nasal), with all shedding resolved by 5 dpi. Of the tissues from the fox euthanized at 3 dpi, infectious virus was isolated from the nasal turbinates of two of three animals, and not from any other tissues.
Our results add red fox to the animal species known to be susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 and suggest that they may contribute to continued maintenance and transmission of the virus.
Preprint: Susceptibility of wild canids to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)
Image by diapicard from Pixabay