The Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture and the Saudi Wildlife Authority urged to adopt the adequate preventive precautions when contact with resident and migratory birds and wild animals to avoid spreading the virus, following the coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak in Wuhan, China.
The ministry pointed out that the preliminary information indicates that 2019-nCoV is a zoonotic disease which was originated in multiple live wild animals, including bats, ungulate species, rodents, in addition to poultry sold at a seafood market in Wuhan.
According to tests carried out in China, the virus passed from the wild animals sold at the seafood market to humans.
The ministry said that no information yet confirmed that 2019-nCoV has been detected in wild animals in Saudi Arabia so far, and that the coronavirus previously recorded in the Saudi Arabia is completely different from the new virus.
The Saudi Wildlife Authority said that the kingdom lies on the migration paths of many wild animals, which pass through Saudi Arabia from areas that may be infected with certain diseases that may be transmitted to humans. And in some cases, animals carrying the virus could show no symptoms they have the virus.
The ministry advised people to take precautionary measures to avoid zoonic debases including avoid direct unprotected contact with wild animals, avoid wild animals poaching and trafficking, wear personal protective equipment when being in contact with animals such as masks and gloves, wash hands thoroughly with soap and water, and disinfect them after being in contact with birds or animals or their meat, In addition to take caution when being in contact with animals showing symptoms, and avoid habitats of migratory birds and consuming unknown animals.
The ministry called on all to report any mass deaths of animals on the toll-free number 8002470000.