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Sleepy Sloth Clings to Mom at Zoo Budapest

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On September 21, a Sloth was born at Zoo Budapest to first-time mom, Lili. The Sloth baby, a healthy male, has been given the respectable name Zippo. He lives in a community of six Sloths, including his maternal grandmother Banya and his father, who was traded in from another zoo in order to prevent inbreeding. Lucky visitors to the zoo may be able to catch a glimpse of the baby clinging to his mother in the New World tropical exhibit.

Sloths take their time with everything, and their reproductive cycle is no exception. They have an especially long gestation period lasting 44 to 50 weeks. After a year or so of pregnancy, the mother will spend six to nine months caring for her baby. They also take a long time to reach sexual maturity, only reproducing for the first time  between 3.5 and 5 years of age. Because it takes so much time and work to successfully raise offspring, it's a good thing that these creatures can live up to 40 years.

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3 slothPhoto credits: L. Kékesdi Gyula /  Zoo Budapest