May 17, 2011

This is a Three-Toed Sloth (Bradypus tridactylus). Sloths are arboreal, which means that they live in trees. They are built to hang, using those long claws to get a good grip on branches.

They are among the slowest moving creatures on Earth, spending about 18 hours a day hanging from a branch, sleeping. In fact, sloths move around so little that green algae grows on their furry coats! The algae works as camouflage because when a sleeping sloth is hanging from a branch, it looks like a bunch of leaves.

Sloths even mate and give birth while hanging in the trees, and their babies travel by hanging onto their mothers for the first nine months of their lives.

The three-toed sloth is an herbivore (a plant-eater) that eats at night, and it is about the size of a cat. They are endangered, due to the destruction of their tropical rainforest habitats in Central and South America.


You can read more about Tropical Rainforests in my latest book, which is now also available as an eBook for the Nook Color and iPad.

Photo: Christian Mehlführer


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Posted by: Seymour Simon

(2) Comments  •   Labels: Animals, Cool Photo, Conservation, Tropical Rainforests   •  Permalink (link to this article)   •  Share: