Sloths and their habitat

How are they adapted to their environment?

Sloths (Folivora)

Sloths are tropical mammals that live in the tropical forests of Central and South America. There are two main species of sloth, identified by whether they have two or three claws on their front feet. The two species are quite similar in appearance, with roundish heads, sad-looking eyes, tiny ears, and stubby tails. Two-toed sloths are slightly bigger and tend to spend more time hanging upside-down than three-toed sloths, who will often sit upright on a tree branch. Three-toed sloths have facial coloring that makes them look like they're always smiling. Sloths are herbivores.

Their habitat

They use their long claws to hang onto branches while they feast on the leaves that other animals can't reach. Unfortunately their long claws (8-10cm) make walking on the ground difficult, so they spend most of their time in the tall trees. Sloths prefer sleeping while curled into a ball in the fork of a tropical tree. They also like to sleep hanging by their claws from tree branches. They spend most of their time on eating and sleeping. They sleep for 18 hours a day. The only other thing that they might need to do to leave their tree house is to go to the bathroom or take a bath.

Adaptations of the Three-toed Sloth

Despite being slow, sloths are well adapted to their environment. They are built perfectly for life in the trees because their arms that are longer than their legs and curved feet for grasping branches. They cannot walk, but are actually good swimmers. They move slowly, but this helps them stay unseen by predators. The grown algae on their fur gives them a good camouflage. They also have three extra neck bones to allow them to turn their heads 270°. This is a very useful adaptation in a world where predators can be above or below them.