ST. LOUIS — A young elephant at the St. Louis Zoo is being treated for herpes, a virus that is potentially fatal to the large mammals.
Martha Fischer, curator of mammals, says the 23-month-old Asian elephant, Jade, seemed lethargic on Sunday, and a blood test taken the next day showed the presence of herpesviral DNA. A second test Wednesday showed the same results.
Zoo officials say staff immediately started giving the elephant anti-viral medication. Veterinarians are conferring with experts in the virus, or EEHV, which was discovered in 1995. The virus has killed elephants in the wild and in zoos.
Jade is the daughter of Saint Louis Zoo elephants Raja and Rani.