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December 17, 2019 4 min read
5 Reasons Sloths Are Underappreciated (And Why You Should Want To Help Save the Sloth!)
If there is one animal that has a completely chill reputation, it is the sloth. These lovable creatures are known for hanging out in trees cruising and snoozing, but there is a lot more to them than just being slow.
In fact, they are fascinating creatures. Though you can hold them, and they will just hang out, they are also capable of more than you might expect.
Just because they are seriously slow and calm creatures, it doesn’t mean that they don’t have crazy intimidating claws. Sloths are known for having giant claws that are pretty terrifying to look at. The interesting thing is that these claws are not intended for protective uses most of the time. While a sloth can certainly use their claws defensively when cornered, they mostly use them to climb and hang around in trees, which is where they spend the majority of their time. Still, when you see a one in person, it is impossible not to notice their giant monstrous claws.
These chill creatures are so calm that they don’t even mind the fact that they are mostly blind. Sloths lack the components in their eyes that are responsible for seeing things in color or with any degree of detail. It is not uncommon for sloths to overlook things completely. Given the fact that these creatures are known for being mostly blind, you would expect them to get eaten fairly quickly. Still, despite this obvious setback, the ever-cool sloth has managed to survive time and time again.
Everyone has seen the jokes about how slow and calm sloths are. Though we all like to make fun of these calm and relaxed creatures, the truth is that sloths are pretty amazing because they don’t overexert themselves. They are known for having remarkably slow metabolic rates. This means their body processes things very slowly, so sloths slow down to accommodate this physical limitation. These guys are so calm and considerate that they mosey along in order to not burn themselves out.
If you are the kind of person who loves a good nap, you might have been a sloth in another life. These delightfully calm creatures are known for spending the majority of their time napping and can nap for more than 15 hours in a day. This makes it easy for them to rest up and recharge from the rest of the day, which they tend to spend crawling around trees. These guys are living the literal dream life by spending all day snoozing in the sun. It’s okay to be jealous. We are too.
You would think that a creature known for crawling less than a football field worth of length daily would not be able to swim, but you would be wrong. On occasion, sloths are known to venture out for a delightful swim in local areas. They are incredibly capable swimmers and use their powerful upper body, which is toned from all that time in the trees, to get their swim on. You might think that these bad boys are all naps and lounging, but they are actually all set to take a dip!
The sloth might not be the most respected creature in its environment, but people certainly do not give them nearly enough of the credit that they deserve. These chilled-out beasts do an excellent job of hanging out and taking life in stride. In this fast-paced world, we could all learn a little more from the sloth.
While most species of sloth are not considered "endangered", they are definitely under threat due to the massive deforestation of the rain forest destroying their home. The health of the sloth population is inseparable from the health of rain forests they reside in. Without an abundance of trees, sloths will lose their shelter and food source. This also causes problems when they come to the forest floor (which they do once a week to relieve themselves) because they are more exposed to predators. They are not adept at defending themselves and can do little to fend off predators without plenty of space to hide.
In order to save the sloth and ensure they are here for the next generation, we must each do our part in making sure that they have a habitat to thrive in. We feel that donating to organizations that work with sloths directly is the best way to help them, as well as supporting organizations that are educating the public on sloth conservation.
At Greenhive Collective, we are partnering with the Sloth Conservatin Foundation in Costa Rica, the world’s leading sloth conservation organization. Every month, we donate a portion of our profits to great charities like the Sloth Conservation Foundation. By donating to great charities that fight for animal rights, we can all help to make sure the sloth can continue to chill out in the rainforest for years to come.
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