On International Sloth Day on the 20th of October, sloths take centre stage to raise awareness for their declining habitats and numbers, due to human interference. International Sloth Day was established by the non-profit conservation foundation AIUNAU based in Columbia in 2010, after the realisation that the species is decreasing at an alarming rate due to deforestation and urbanisation. Thus, this international day was created out of necessity to bring attention to the dangers facing the existence of the species.
Here at Paradise Wildlife Park, Mr Jingles and Dame Jingles, our resident two-toed sloths act as ambassadors for their wild counterparts, helping to educate the public through their daily activities and the Rainforest and Sloth Experience where you can get up close and personal with Mr Jingles and Dame Jingles whilst learning lots of fun facts from our zookeepers.
Two-toed sloths live in South and Central America, with these nocturnal animals spending most of their time high up in the trees. Their diets consist mainly of tree leaves, shoots and foliage. Mr Jingle and Dame Jingles favourite foods of corn and chicory are often on the menu too. Sloths sleep around 15 – 20 hours a day and when needed they are actually much better at swimming than walking. They use their strong forefeet to propel themselves through the water and when sufficiently motivated they are capable of moving at about 1.6 km per hour on the ground. Although, they spend almost all of their time in the high tops of trees asleep or eating. This also helps them remain protected and unseen from predators such as Jaguars.
You can come and see our fantastic two-toed sloths Mr Jingles and Dame Jingles in our Rainforest building which also houses our newest additions to the Park, our twin baby pygmy marmosets. Don’t forget to stop and say hi next time you are visiting.