SAN DIEGO — International Sloth Day is a time to rally around conservation efforts focused on the world’s sleepiest mammal.
Tess is a Linne's two-toed sloth who is an animal ambassador at SeaWorld San Diego. Zoological Specialist Dillon Slater said Tess plays an important role in educating guests about how they can help animals in their everyday lives.
“There is a very large amount of aluminum ore under the rainforest, and so we are trying to advocate for any type of alternative to aluminum foil. Parchment paper is a really good one," Slater said. "Or if you can at least try and reuse it or just reduce the amount you have. So that’s one of the reasons we try and educate and inspire our guests to care for these animals; it’s not just sloths, it’s all animals in the rain forest.”
Tornero is also a Linne's two-toed sloth who is a wildlife ambassador at the San Diego Zoo.
Senior Wildlife Care Specialist Kyle Legoll said the sloth breeding program at the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance allows them to study their daily lifestyles, their health and how we can all help protect them in the wild — something as easy as buying the right kind of coffee.
“One of the easiest things is look for a little label called Shade-grown Coffee," Legoll said. "That coffee is grown underneath the habitat that [sloths] would call home, which means you don’t have to cut down his trees. He gets to maintain his lifestyle high up in the canopies of the rain forest. You still get that wonderful great coffee you need, that jolt in the morning, but we are living with them, not against them.”
Click here for seven other ways you can help sloths in everyday life.