The ultralow freezer is used to store biological samples, including blood and tissue, from a variety of species at the Birmingham Zoo. Most samples are obtained while animals are under anesthesia and they cannot be easily replaced. Veterinary staff often use saved samples from the freezer if an animal is sick, which helps avoid anesthetizing an animal again. One example of this is the Zoo’s male De Brazza’s monkey, who had been losing weight. On the initial exam, the Veterinary staff identified a blood parasite. Staff were able to send a blood sample that was saved in the ultralow for molecular testing to identify the parasite as Trypanasoma cruzi, the causative agent of Chagas disease. The Veterinary team treated this monkey and he made a full recovery. Additionally, biological samples are used in research and are critical to advancing animal care.
Ultra Low Freezer for Birmingham Zoo