Two-toed Sloth, Choloepus didactylus & Choloepus hoffmanni
March 2009

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TAXONOMY

Describer (Date): Linnaeus 1758 (Choloepus
      didactylus
), Peters 1858 (Choloepus
      hoffmanni
).
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Magnorder: Xenarthra (sloth, anteaters and
      armadilos)
Order: Pilosa (sloths and anteaters)
Family: Megalonychidae
Genus:Choloepus (Two-toed sloths)
Species:Choloepus didactylus (Linnaeus' Two-
      toed sloth), Choloepus hoffmanni (Hoffmann's
      Two-toed sloth)
Family: Bradypodidae
Genus: Bradypus (Three-toed sloths)
Species: Bradypus varigatus (Bolivian or Brown-
      throated sloth), Bradypus tridactylus (Pale-
      throated sloth), Bradypus torquatus (Maned
      sloth), Bradypus pygmaeus (Pygmy sloth)
      described in 2001 by Anderson & Handley.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Body Weight: 4 - 9 kg (10 - 20 lbs)
Body Length: Adults: 540 - 740 mm (21 - 29 in)
Pelage: C. didactylus - uniformly brown;
      C. hoffmann
i - lighter than C. didactylus,
      with pale throat.


DISTRIBUTION AND STATUS

Range: Central and South America; the two
      species overlap in Andean region and western
      Amazonia.
Habitat: Humid, warm tropical and subtropical
      forest and cloud forest.
IUCN Status: Least Concern (LC)
CITES Appendix: Choloepus hoffmanni-
      Appendix III in Coasta Rica; C. didactylus -
      not listed.
Population in Wild: Not enough data to
      estimate population trends or sizes.
ISIS captive population: 283 Choloepus
      didactylus
; 101 C. hoffmanni.

BEHAVIOR AND ECOLOGY

Locomotion: Slow-moving climbing in trees; good
      swimmer; almost never walks on ground.
Activity Cycle: Exclusively nocturnal (Three-toed
      sloth active day and night).
Social Groups: Typically solitary but females may
      feed in same tree.
Diet: Mainly leaves; also twigs, buds, fruit,
      occasionally rodents and insects.
Predators: Jaguar, ocelot, birds of prey (Harpy
      eagle).


REPRODUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT

Sexual Maturity: Females about 3 years;
                           Males 4 -5 years
Gestation: Ten months for both species (6 months
      for Bradypus).
Litter Size: One
Birth weight: 340 - 400 grams (12 ounces)
Age at Weaning: About one month (may take
      leaves earlier).
Longevity: 10 - 15 years in wild; over 30 years in
      captivity.

SPECIES HIGHLIGHTS

Feature Facts: Very low metabolic rate (only
      40 - 60% that of similar sized animals).


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