Baby Sloth Worth the Wait
April 23, 2016
A baby Sloth born at Great Britain’s Drusillas Park is the first ever born in the zoo’s 91-year history.
The little Linne’s Two-toed Sloth was born to female Sidone and her mate Sophocles on March 26. Zoo keepers had been anxiously awaiting the birth, and were thrilled to find the baby on their early morning rounds.
Photo Credit: Drusillas Park
Though this species of Sloth is not rare in the wild, births are not common in zoos. In the past year, only four were born in the United Kingdom and just 27 were born worldwide.
Because Sidone was hand-reared as a youngster, keepers were concerned that she would lack mothering skills. However, Sidone is proving to be an excellent mother to her new baby.
Sidone and Sophocles were introduced in January 2014, and like all Sloth activities, they took their time getting to know each other. After a ten-month gestation period, their baby finally arrived.
Linne’s Two-toed Sloths are native to northern South America’s rain forests, where they spend nearly all their lives in the treetops. Sloths are specially adapted to eat, sleep, and mate while hanging upside-down from a branch. They descend to the ground only to defecate and move to a tree that cannot be reached from their home tree.