Wednesday mornings are baby sloth bath day at the Aviaros del Caribe-Sloth Sanctuary in Costa Rica. First they get shampooed, then get rubbed in an organic concoction to keep them parasite free, then they drip dry for a little before they are toweled off. Afterwards, they get a colorful treat for being so good, and drift off into nap land. You can read more about these babies on the Sanctuary's sloth blog.
This video, from a recent documentary, includes an ad but was just too cute not to show.
Filmmaker Lucy Cooke's full length hour-long documentary "Too Cute! Baby Sloths" premiers this Saturday, December 17th at 8pm EST on Animal Planet. The film (and trailer below) features lots of baby Sloths, the residents of The Sloth Sanctuary of Costa Rica, the world's only Sloth sanctuary. Most are orphans whose mothers have been killed by power lines or cars. These orphans have a new, if slightly unconventional mom in celebrated Sloth whisperer Judy Arroyo.
Two of the biggest stars of the film (and trailer) are Violet and Sebastian - the sanctuary's first ever twins. While Lucy was filming they both got sick with a skin condition and had to pay a visit to the sanctuary 'slothpital'. Violet got wrapped up in pink bandages and Sebastian was given specialized sloth pajamas made out of sports socks! (Sebastian in his jammies above)
Judy now has over 160 sloths at the sanctuary which is a lot of mouths to feed. The sloths chomp through 40 tons of vegetables every year. You can help keep these slothful friends fed by making a donation to the Sanctuary today!
Back in June, we brought you the story of Sid the Sloth, who had to be hand-raised round the clock after her mother took ill shortly after birth. Well, the hard work has paid off as Bristol Zoo’s baby Two-Toed Sloth is now nearly four months old and has developed into a strong, healthy and inquisitive youngster, with a particular penchant for green beans. Senior keeper, Karla Tucker, is one of the team of keepers who has raised her. She said: “We are really pleased with Sid’s progress. She is very bright, alert and active, and is now four times the weight she was at birth. “We now feed her seven times a day, between 6am and 8pm, with milk formula and vegetables such as cooked sweet potato and green beans, which she loves. She still goes home with a keeper every night so that we can keep a close eye on her and give her evening feeds.” She added: “It will be a while yet before she goes on show with her parents in Twilight World, as she is still very dependent on us to look after her. She is a fantastic animal and she loves people. It is lovely to have this rare opportunity to hand-rear a baby sloth, although we only hand-rear animals as a last resort.”
Sidone (Sid for short) is a five week old baby sloth, being cared for round the clock by a team of dedicated keepers at Bristol Zoo. She was born in Twilight World to mother, Light Cap, and weighed around 500g (1.1lbs) at birth. But Light Cap was taken ill shortly after giving birth and had to receive veterinary treatment. After a stay in the Zoo’s on-site veterinary centre, Light Cap made a full recovery and was returned to Twilight World. However, she was no longer producing enough milk to feed her baby and keepers had no choice but to intervene to hand-rear Sid in order to save her. The youngster, who has been named after Sid the sloth in the popular Ice Age movie, is believed to be a girl, but sloths are very difficult to sex. She is being looked after by zoo keepers in a special room behind-the-scenes of Twilight World.
Now five weeks old, she weighs 537g (1.2lbs) and is growing well. But she has needed a lot of care from her keepers, including almost daily checks by the zoo vet, as explained by Bristol Zoo’s Overseer of Mammals, Rob Rouse. He said: “Four keepers have been intensively caring for Sid since she was three days old and we’re thrilled that she is doing so well. She is strong, healthy and very inquisitive, and she loves people.”
The Rosamond Gifford Zoo is pleased to announce the birth of its 44th Hoffmann’s Two-toed Sloth. Ocabo (Oh-cob-oh) was born on February 9; he is the son of Bite Lip and Beauregard. The name, Ocabo, comes from a Latin American word meaning “head,” and was chosen because of the young Sloth’s exceptionally large skull. After some initial supplementation from zoo staff, Ocabo is thriving and can be seen on exhibit with the other Sloths.
A one-week-old Hoffman’s two-toed sloth clings to its mother today at Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo. The youngster was born on Feb. 15 to the 20-year-old, first-time mom. Despite the mother being new and inexperienced, animal care staff reports that she is being very attentive and caring to the youngster. The baby is nursing, clinging well, and appears healthy. The baby has not yet been named, and its sex is currently unknown. The mother and baby can been seen daily in the zoo’s Regenstein Small Mammal-Reptile House.
Photo 1 and 3 credits: Lincoln Park Zoo / John Kortas. Photo 2 credits: Lincoln Park Zoo / Julie Ann Platt
Keepers at Loro Parque, in Tenerife, were seeing double this September when mother sloth Bimba gave birth to two a set of twins. Following the birth, the Loro Parque veterinary team stepped in to hand-raise one of the babies as the mother was only able to care for one offspring. Staff member Kirsten became a surrogate mum, tending to the baby Two-toed Sloth at the on-site clinic and taking her "new baby" home every night, where it sleeps next to her bed in a make-shift cot with a toy gorilla for company (see the video!). Both sloths are healthy and progressing well and the park will reunite the twins at a later date.
Photo credits: Loro Parque Tenerife / Ulrich Brodde
The Rosamond Gifford Zoo has an exceptionally sleepy and exceptionally adorable new addition - a 6-week-old baby Hoffman's Two-toed Sloth. Born underweight, Ruth as she has been named has bounced back thanks to keepers supplanting her nursing with nutritional formula. Now Ruth is happy, healthy and as active as Two-toed Sloth ought to be, which is to say, pretty laid back. Sloths are not on the endangered species list. However, their habitat is quickly being destroyed, leaving them homeless and vulnerable to a decrease in their population size. They are part of a Species Survival Plan (SSP) - a collaborative effort between the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and zoos around the world to help ensure their survival.
We think the Sanctuary's Mission statement sums their work up best: To consolidate our Sanctuary as an agency that promotes and implements the protection and rehabilitation of sloths in Costa Rica, through the observation, study, care and analysis of animals in recovery; to promote actions that raise people's awareness and to facilitate education in order to improve the welfare and quality of life of Costa Rica's two species of sloth.
Baby sloths cling to mom for the first nine months of life and this little six month old is still enjoying her free ride. These photos of mother sloth Alba and her daughter, were taken May 2nd by Shirley Ng at the Singapore Zoo. As newborns, baby sloths are only the size of a baseball.