SAO PAULO – Two zoos and a botanical garden in Sao Paulo, Brazil’s largest city, closed their doors on Tuesday after a monkey apparently died from yellow fever, health officials said.
An outbreak of the disease was detected in Sao Paulo state, where 26 deaths have been registered since January 2017, as well as other areas of the country, such as Rio de Janeiro and Minas Gerais.
Health officials have launched a vaccination campaign that will be expanded on Thursday.
Since last July, health officials have confirmed at least 15 deaths from yellow fever in Minas Gerais and five in Rio de Janeiro.
The two zoos and the botanical garden are located in the southern part of Sao Paulo, which is home to 12 million people.
No deaths from yellow fever, a serious and infectious viral disease transmitted via bites from different types of mosquitoes, have been reported in the city of Sao Paulo.
The temporary restrictions will be kept in place until lab results come back, officials said.
Preliminary findings suggest the monkey died of yellow fever, health officials said.
In all the cases, the variety of yellow fever found is of the sylvatic type, which is transmitted by the Haemagogus and Sabethes mosquitoes present in forests.
Urban-type yellow fever – not seen in Brazil since 1942 – is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the vector for dengue, Zika and chikunguña, three viruses that have plagued the country in recent years.
The tropical disease is known as yellow fever because jaundice is one of its symptoms.