Linne’s Two-toed Sloth ~
Linne’s two-toed sloths inhabit cloud forests and rain forests of northern South America. These arboreal browsers (leaf-eaters) have one of the slowest metabolisms and lowest body temperatures of all the mammals. Sloths are not able to thermoregulate efficiently by means of shivering, so their core body temperatures can drop to the same temperature as their environmental temperature! Sloths are so slow that algae will grow within their fur. The Linne’s two-toed sloth rarely comes to the ground where it can be vulnerable to predators like jaguars. The primary reason for these individuals to come to the ground is to defecate and urinate, which occurs only once per week!
The Linne’s two-toed sloth is a common species, but populations have been declining due to habitat fragmentation from deforestation, over-collection of sloths for the pet trade (sloths make terrible pets due to their incredibly specialized needs and veterinary care), and collisions with vehicles. The Good Zoo participates in the Linne’s two-toed sloth Species Survival Plan breeding program with other Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited institutions to ensure a sustainable population of this species in human care.
At the zoo, we care for our sloths, Sweet Pea and Grover. We feed them a high fiber zoo primate biscuit, romaine lettuce, yams, and carrots. They enjoy sleeping on their resting platforms, climbing vines, and a variety of nesting materials and hammocks.