In the United States, laboratory mice are euthanized due to a lack of researchers. The reason is that many scientists are quarantined due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This writes Science.
The order to reduce the number of animals used in various kinds of experiments was received by several laboratories in the USA. First of all, they concern laboratory mice, which make up 95% of the livestock.
Due to the fact that many laboratory staff are now in quarantine, there aren’t enough people to do most of the experiments – not enough hands to feed the animals and clean their cages.
The number of livestock to be reduced varies by laboratory. For example, the University of Pennsylvania recommends leaving about 60% of the animals, while other laboratories have prescribed euthanizing all animals that will not take part in the experiments in the coming weeks.
In addition to ethical considerations (euthanasia is carried out in a humane way – in a chamber with carbon dioxide) and psychological pressure on university employees, forced reduction of the number of laboratory animals can lead to problems with their sufficient number in the future.