NATURE: A Sloth Named Velcro

Year: 2014

Year: NR

If you are an aficionado of critter videos (and who isn’t, really, considering how cat videos alone clog up all the tubes that run the internets), you will most likely be familiar with sloths. These are the wacky, slow-moving, monkey-armed, large-taloned critters that look like sleepy old stoned men, who happen to hang out in tree canopies. Yeah, those guys. But you just know that they are funny and cute, and that their babies make tiny meeping/squeaking sounds that are so adorable that all you can do is bang your head on a keyboard in pain and pleasure.

But did you know that they only poop once a week? And did you know that their fur has a green sheen because they are covered in nutritious algae that makes up for their crappy, leafy diet? Did you know that (in the wild at least), they don’t sleep the day away as much as we all thought? Did you know that they are covered in moths? WHO KNEW?!?!

Along with these fascinating factoids, A Sloth Named Velcro, yes, tells the story of a sloth named Velcro that was adopted in 2000 by Spanish journalist Ana Salceda. Ana was living in Panama, and kind of fell into the role as a caregiver to a tiny tiny sloth baby. For two years, Ana care for this little sloth, who was often stuck to her, yes, like Velcro, as Ana traveled for her job. When it was time, Ana released Velcro to the wild.

A Sloth Named Velcro doesn’t give us a neat follow-up to Ana and Velcro’s story (there is no slothy reunion in the jungle), but, through Ana, viewers learn about different sloth conservation efforts that are underway in Panama, Costa Rica, and Columbia–all areas where urban growth and deforestation have robbed these unique creatures of much of their natural habitats. The special is both educational and cute, and may even make your eyes a little misty when you see a rehabilitated sloth get released back to the wild. And, if you happen to be hemming and hawing about your perfect job, may I suggest working for the Citizen Sloth Patrol in Panama? It is a real thing. That is all I have to say about that.

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