Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Bitten By Giant Bird During Quarantine

Bolsonaro was bitten by a flightless emu-like bird, called Rhea, while feeding birds in quarantine

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who has been tested positive for the novel coronavirus for a second time, was reportedly bitten by an emu-like bird that he tried to feed while in quarantine at the presidential palace, a media report said.

On Monday, Bolsonaro complained of his "horrible" isolation, saying he "can't stand this routine of staying at home," the Independent newspaper reported on Wednesday.

'Pecked' By Giant Bird

Later that day, he took a stroll around the Palacio da Alvorada in Brasilia and decided to feed the birds. One of the flightless birds, called a rhea, "pecked" at the President, the Portuguese language Metropoles news website reported.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Wikimedia Commons

In a live Facebook broadcast on Wednesday, Bolsonaro confirmed that he has once again tested positive for COVID-19, roughly a week after he contracted the virus. "We hope that in the next few days, they will give me a new test and, everything will be fine so that we can return to normal activity," he added.

Downplaying Risk Posed by Coronavirus

On July 7, Bolsonaro, who repeatedly played down the risks posed by the virus which he termed "a little flu" and asserting that he would not be seriously affected by it, announced that after developing a fever and general discomfort, he tested positive for COVID-19 at the Brazilian Armed Forces Hospital.

Bolsonaro, who is 65 years old, is part of an age group experts consider to be at high risk for developing complications from the disease. Brazil currently accounts for the second-highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the world at 1,966,748 and 75,366, respectively, according to the Johns Hopkins University, which is monitoring the number of cases worldwide.

Despite the rising numbers, Bolsonaro has argued that regional lockdowns were having a more damaging effect than the virus itself, and accused the media of spreading panic and paranoia.