Sloth Blockage

IMG_2329“Sloths look sweet but they can tear your jugular out with one swipe.” Our volunteer trainer at the Denver aquarium reminded me of a photo shoot I had with a sloth in Columbia.  As you can see below the little guy’s claws did put me on edge.


The handler wrapped the sloth’s legs around me slowly as if its limbs required extra time to move, and they did feel stiff, almost creaky. Sloth is not a weakness in the sloth’s case.  It’s about surviving in a predatory jungle.  An animal that moves slowly and sparingly is hard to spot.  Sloths do have to go the distance when it comes to relieving themselves.  They climb down their tree every week or so to bury their waste discretely.  It must be a real disappointment to make that trip only to discover that they are too constipated to get the job done.  According to a jungle guide, they sometimes climb back up and free-fall out of the tree to knock the blockage loose.

About breathtakebyways

Ann Williams’ travel articles have appeared in publications all over the country including The Washington Post, Roads to Adventure, and Jack and Jill. Between researching and writing books, she specializes in creative lectures.