A baby Hoffman’s two-toed sloth has been born at Buttonwood Park Zoo, the first in the zoo's 127-year history.
Zoo officials announced the Hoffman’s two-toed sloth was born on June 22 to first time parents, 12-year-old female Sandy and 20-year-old male, Bernardo.
“Since this is Sandy’s first birth, we wanted to give her plenty of space to bond with baby before we performed an examination," said BPZOO’s veterinarian, Dr. Erica Lipanovich in the news release. "We were able to quickly examine the baby at six days old, where it weighed in at 348 grams (roughly 0.76 pounds) — both baby and mom are doing exceptionally well.”
Sloths do mostly everything upside down high up in the trees — eat, sleep, mate, and give birth — lowering to the ground only to defecate. For months, after confirming pregnancy as part of this animal’s regular ultrasound exam training, zookeepers were carefully monitoring and awaiting this monumental birth, eagerly checking on Sandy every morning. The baby will cling tightly to its mother’s fur, and young sloths remain near their mothers for around a year. Zoo staff will continue to monitor the baby’s growth with weekly weight checks and will eventually determine the sex, which can be an incredibly tricky process in sloths, according to the release.