Two hundred illegally smuggled lovebirds intercepted by Turkish customs officials at the Kilis border gate in southeastern Turkey have found a new home at the Gaziantep Zoo.
The parrots were found during a search of a vehicle seeking to enter the country from Syria.
The birds were delivered to the Kilis National Parks Branch Directorate, which then transferred them to the Gaziantep Zoo.
The head of the Department of Wildlife Protection and Agricultural Services of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality, Celal Özsöyler, said in a statement that the lovebirds are being treated for various sicknesses.
“I hope they will be able to move into our Bird House when they recover their health soon,” Özsöyler said.
The Gaziantep Zoo, home to 350 species and 7,500 animals, opened its doors to visitors Monday after being closed for about 70 days due to the outbreak of the coronavirus in Turkey.
Visitors are required to wear masks and have their temperatures checked, while signs throughout the zoo caution guests to maintain social distance.
Özsöyler told an Anadolu Agency (AA) correspondent that the zoo is taking all precautions to give visitors peace of mind as they visit, including limiting the number of guests in enclosed areas and distributing disinfectant.
As of Monday, dozens of restrictions put in place to stem the spread of the coronavirus were lifted.
Restaurants, cafes, gyms, parks, beaches, museums, daycare centers and libraries were also allowed to open their doors after a nearly two-month closure.
The green light to reopen many public places was the latest phase of Ankara’s plan to return life to normal. The government previously ordered barbers, beauty salons and shopping malls to reopen with limited capacity.
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