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Stone Zoo welcomes newborn Linne’s two-toed sloth

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Article

The baby appears strong and healthy and has been observed nursing from her mother

Stone Zoo has recently announced the birth that a Linne’s two-toed sloth was born on Friday, March 3, 2023. The sixth offspring of parents Lunesta and Nero, the baby will be completely dependent on mom for the first few months.

The baby sloth with mother Lunesta (Photo courtesy of Zoo New England).

The baby sloth with mother Lunesta (Photo courtesy of Zoo New England).

“Lunesta is an experienced mom and knows how to care for her growing family,” expressed Pete Costello, assistant curator at Stone Zoo, in an organizational release.1 “We’re excited for guests to watch the baby grow and settle in to the habitat. In the meantime, it will stay pretty closely attached to mom for a while.”

According to the release, Zoo New England participates in the Linne’s Two-Toed Sloth Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is a cooperative, inter-zoo program coordinated nationally through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. The birth is due to a recommended breeding between Nero and Lunesta.

Linne’s two-toed sloths are furry mammals that live in trees and are found in the tropical forests of South America. Most of their lives are spent dangling upside-down from branches they move swiftly through by grasping on to with all 4 clawed feet. However, they are very slow and vulnerable to predators on the ground as they are not built for walking.

The animal is named a “two-toed sloth” because its front limbs have two toes, though its rear limb has three toes. Sloths are also covered in 2 layers of thick hair, and the outer layer can be about 6 inches long and offers an ideal, moist environment for the growth of many organisms. Their hair grows in the opposite direction of most mammals because sloths spend so much time upside down.

Reference

Stone Zoo celebrates the birth of a Linne’s two-toed sloth. Zoo New England. March 9, 2023. Accessed March 9, 2023. https://www.zoonewengland.org/zoo-news/2023/march/stone-zoo-celebrates-the-birth-of-a-linne-s-two-toed-sloth

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