20 awesome sloth clipart designs for your next sloth craft project

Is there anything more perfect than hanging around the house in your sloth pyjamas, having a slothful Sunday crafternoon?

No, I don’t think so either.

As all sloth lovers know, being slow is nothing to be ashamed of. But I must admit to being very slow to discovering the world of the cutting machine.

Crafting is awesome, but sometimes cutting out all those small and intricate pieces can be tiresome and time consuming. So my ears prick up when I hear that the Cricut Maker can cut over 100 different types of materials. That’s a lot of materials! Is there a craft that wouldn’t be made easier by such a machine??

I don’t have a Cricut yet, but it is totally on my list of things to buy. And since discovering all the awesome sloth cutting files around, the Cricut has bumped itself up to the top of my crafty wish list.

But in the meantime, for you lucky sloth-loving cutting-machine-owning crafter – here’s a list of sloth cutting files and clipart to add to your crafty shopping basket.

This page contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a commission (at no additional cost to you). Thanks for your support!

Watercolor Sloth Clip Art Set

This set looks perfect for baby gifts. Nothing improves a plain old baby romper quite like a gorgeous little watercolor sloth. With this set in your crafting library you’ll never be stuck for ideas for creating gifts for baby showers, naming ceremonies or first birthdays.


watercolor we love sloths clipart.

Sloth Mode Cutting File

I think this would be perfect for a pyjama shirt, but there are no limits to the type of project you could create with this cute sloth SVG file.

sloth mode file for cutting machine

Sloth Polygonzoo Cutting File

How cool is this design? Perfect for the teen or college student sloth lover. Available in svg, pdf, dxf and png plus a pdf instruction file.

sloth svg cutting file polygon style

Slackadelic Sloth Clipart Bundle

This set of 15 sleepy sloths is designed with invitations, scrapbooking, cards and printables in mind. Available as jpeg, png and ai files – and comes with 3 bonus patterns.

sloth clipart bundle

Home Sloth Cutting File

How adorable is this? I want to know how to transfer this on to carpet, can anyone tell me?

Otherwise, it would also look great on a sign, or on a pillow for your couch or bed. Or even a blanket! So many ideas…

sloth cuddling the word home on a welcome mat

Slow Brew Sloth Logo

Perfect for a coffee cup or travel mug, or a smoothie glass. Use this SVG file in your cutting machine, create the transfer, whack it on your gift of choice and delight a person you love.

slow brew sloth imitation starbucks logo

 

Slow Summer Days Sloth

Perhaps there’s a little girl in your life (or maybe she’s not so little), who loves both sloths AND flamingos?

Her dreams have just come true.

sloth drinking cocktail on a flamingo floatie

Let’s get philoslothical cutting file

Philosophy sloth is one of my favourite memes. Here’s another philoslother for your crafting pleasure.

lets get philoslothical sloth with glasses

 

Let it Go Yoga Sloth

Yoga shirt, yoga pants, yoga drink bottle perhaps? Or maybe a meditation journal?

Actually, any time is a good time to be reminded to let it go – so stick this sloth on anything you can think of.

sloth doing yoga with caption let it go

Slothie coffee sloth

Now this sloth is my spirit animal.

Slothee: one who savors coffee as sustenance.

Plus, a portion of this sale goes to a non-kill animal rescue shelter. Philoslother sloth would approve.

slothee coffee sloth

Slow the Sloth Down

This one’s from the same seller, Downloads that Donate, and so a portion of your money will go to animal charities. As if you needed another reason to purchase this cutie.

peach colored tee with jeans and glasses

Mandala Sloth

Sloth plus mandala equals love.

blue mandala sloth on a white tee

And here’s another mandala sloth, perhaps for your wall?

mandala sloth with flower

Jungle Friends Clipart Set

Another set of clipart animals that’s perfect for the little ones. Baby shower invitations, baby’s first year scrapbook, nursery accessories – they’ll all be adorable with this sweet little sloth and her jungle friends adorning them.

jungle friends clipart set

 

Glitter Sloths Clipart

If anything’s missing from your life, it’s glitter sloths.

Luckily, this can be fixed with an instant download.

glitter sloths clipart

Ask me about my sloth

Is there a toddler in existence who wouldn’t love the opportunity to flash their belly when you ask them about their sloth?

No. There is not.

ask me about my sloth toddler tshirt

A gift for tea lovers?

How lovely is this lovely cup with this lovely sloth on it? SO lovely! I’m sure you, or someone you know, would find your hot drink to be extra lovely when sipped out of  this.

black line drawn sloth on a white cup

Be happy sloth

All sloths want is for us to be happy. It’s the least we can do for them. 

black line drawn sloth on a white tote bag

Sloth cutting file mega bundle

130 sloth designs in one bundle! Cute sloths, valentine sloths, funny sloths, coloring book sloths – they’re all here. And if you don’t find the sloth that you want in this bundle, just email the designer and he’ll create it for you at no extra cost!

cute sloths valentine sloths color book sloths cutting files

Sleepy watercolor sloth clipart

Ok, this one’s perfect for baby’s nursery. He or she can snooze in good company – a beautifully handpainted sloth, elephant, koala, panda and raccoon, along with stars, bow ties, clouds and moons.

sleeping animals watercolor clip art set

 

Phew, just thinking of all the sloth crafting projects to be done makes me feel very slothful myself. I’ll just have a little nap while you get busy with some awesome sloth DIY projects.

Show me your pictures please!

 

 

The 10 best free crochet sloth patterns

You long to cuddle a sloth, but you know that sloth selfies aren’t cool. Plus sloths tend to live in the rainforest, and you don’t.

You really only have one option, don’t you. Crochet yourself a sloth. Crochet a bucket full of sloths. And cuddle them all day long.

Big crochet sloths to snooze on your bed, pocket sized sloths to hang out with you all day long, sloths to keep your coffee warm, sloths to hold your page in your book, sloths to put on your head, sloth loveys for your baby. They’re all here. You shall never have a lonely sloth-less day again.

Plus these patterns are all free. So now your only problem is choosing which one to make first.

Crochet sloth baby lovey

Download the free pattern for this adorable sloth lovey at Yarnspirations. Conveniently, you can buy the perfect yarn while you’re at it. You’ll need to BYO baby though.

baby holding crochet sloth lovey

Crochet sloth bookmark

Keep your place in your book in the cutest way possible with this free crochet sloth bookmark pattern from Heart Hook Home.

Crochet sloth bookmark in pages of open book


Sloth Amigurumi

This smiley fuzzy three toed sloth is just hanging out to be cuddled by you. Grab the free pattern from Craft Passion.

sloth amigurumi

Crochet sloth hat pattern

Lovable Loops provides instructions for making adorable sloth hats of all sizes. Make one for all the sloth loving people in your life, big and small.

Sloth crochet hat pattern

Mini crochet sloth pattern

This teeny tiny sloth will be happy to snuggle in your pocket all day long, or sit on your desk and watch you work. And it’s a quick and easy project so you can soon have  a whole family of mini baby sloths. Find a review of Lauren Bergstrom’s book, plus the free pattern for these little guys at Underground Crafter.

Mini crochet sloth pattern

Baby crochet sloth pattern

Here’s another option if it’s a teeny tiny sloth you’re after. The Twisted Crocheter offers a free pattern for a baby amigurumi sloth.

Baby crochet sloth pattern


Extreme amigurumi sloth pattern

But perhaps it’s the other end of the sloth sized spectrum that you’re looking for?

Behold – the giant sloth amigurumi pattern by Storyland Amis.

Extreme amigurumi sloth pattern

Crochet sloth keychain

Hang this little sloth from your keys, or from your bag. It’s a  lovely quick little gift to make for teachers or school friends. Pattern by Cozy Little Mess.

crochet sloth keychain

Sloth crochet hook bag pattern

You need somewhere to keep your crochet hooks handy while you crochet all these sloths. The Loopy Lamb has got just the pattern for you.

sloth crochet hook case

Crochet sloth coffee cozy

While you’re hanging out at The Loopy Lamb, be sure to grab her pattern for her sloth coffee cozy. Now both your crochet hooks and your coffee will stay warm and sloth-covered. Tell her Hanging with Sloths says hi 🙂

crochet sloth coffee cozy

And there you have it. 10 awesome and awesomely free sloth crochet patterns. Be sure to share your pics of your new sloth family here with us.

 

The eye popping Hoffmann’s Two Toed Sloth (Choloepus hoffmanni)

How do you know if a sloth is a Hoffmann’s?

Can you tell the difference between the Hoffmann’s Two Toed Sloth and the Linnaeus Two Toed Sloth?

Neither can I.

Neither can a lot of people.

Turns out it’s quite a difficult thing to do. They are very similar. The differences are subtle.

Basically, all vertebrates (including us humans) have things called foramen in our skulls. Foramen are openings that let nerves, muscles, arteries and veins connect one part of the body to another. Hoffmann’s Two Toed sloths have three foramina in their skulls, but Linnaeus’s only have two. Told you the differences were subtle, huh?

Skull of Hoffman's Two Toed Sloth
Hoffmann’s Two Toed Sloth Skull – spot the foramen?

However, if you do find one day that you need to tell the difference between a Linne’s sloth and a Hoffmann’s, have a look at their arms and shoulders. Linne’s tend to have dark markings, Hoffmann’s don’t.

Now compare the Hoffmann’s to the Three Toed Sloths, and the differences get a lot easier to pick.

Hoffmann’s are bigger. They grow to be somewhere between 54 to 72cm long (head – body) and weigh anywhere from 2.1kg to 9k.

Their claws are 5 – 6.5cm long. Their tails are only 1.5-3cm long, too short to notice beneath their fur.

And, like their two toed Linnaeus friends, they have light brown fur, with a greenish tinge in the wet season due to the algae making home in their coat. Their hair grows to be about 15cm long, and they actually have a nice soft inner coat, underneath their coarse outer coat, which helps to insulate them.

Where can I find the Hoffmann’s Two Toed Sloth?

Hoffmann’s live in tropical rainforests ranging from sea level up to about 10,800 ft, or 3.3km, above sea level. They are actually separated into two different areas of Central and South America, divided by the Andes. One group can be found ranging from western Ecuador up to eastern Honduras. The other group inhabits the areas of western Brazil, eastern Peru and northern Bolivia.

Sometimes boys fight over who gets the girl

Males rub their bums on trees to leave a smell, alerting the ladies to their presence. Understandably excited by this, the females let it be known that they are ready to make babies by letting out a high pitched scream. This scream brings the boys to the yard, but sometimes more than one arrives at the same time. When this happens, it’s all on. The males hang upside down by their legs, and take swipes at each other until one gives up.

This all tends to happen in the rainy season and babies are then born at the beginning of the dry season. Females are pregnant for about a year and generally only have one baby at a time.

Baby Hoffmann’s are only about 25cm long and are born with their claws, which help them to cling onto their mom.

Momma Hoff carries her baby around for 6 to 9 months, and then packs him or her off to make their own way in the world.

Pappa Hoff is not interested in parenting life and doesn’t hang around to get to know his kids.

Hoffmann's Two Toed Sloth hanging from tree
Hoffmann’s Two Toed Sloth by Geoff Gallice

The Sloth’s fitbit is constantly disappointed

Hoffmann’s tend to be nocturnal, and the most movement they get each day is moving from mid-canopy to upper-canopy. Which means they only travel about 35m a day on average.

There is one day a week that they get all sporty, however. That day is toilet day. Hoffmann’s need to travel to the ground to do their weekly business, and they tend to do it in the same places each time. When they climb down their trees, they do so head first.

Being on the ground puts them at risk of being attacked by predators. If they find that they need to defend themselves, they rely on their sharp claws and teeth. But also, they give a mean dirty look. They make themselves pop-eyed when stressed out or feeling aggressive, just to look a bit scarier. Also, sometimes they hiss!

Generally, though, thanks to their very limited movement and camouflage, Hoffmann’s are pretty well pretected from predators like harpy eagles and jaguars. Also, they are categorised as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List.

Recommended Reading

Animal Diversity

How to win Halloween and party like a sloth

Whether it’s for Halloween, a fancy dress party, a school play or just an intense desire to lounge around the house dressed as a sloth, there is a sloth costume for you.

person in party sloth costume lying on lounge

Check out this round up of the best sloth costumes available for you and your kids.

This page contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a commission (at no additional cost to you). Thanks for your support!

Sloth mask

Perhaps you’re already covered in moth-riddled, algae-tinged, backwards-lying fur and you just need something to transform your head into a sloth?

Go for this mask.

Sloth costume for newborn

Get that photographer booked in. This is perfect for your newborn’s photo session.

newborn baby wearing crochet sloth costume

Sloth costume for baby

Your baby is already gorgeous, but why don’t you multiply his or her adorability factor a few times with this costume. Your baby sloth will be the hit of any party.

Sloth costume for kids

This one’s not available until September 2019, but get yourself on the mailing list to be notified when it’s arrived, and get all smug because you’ve got Halloween organised months before the actual event.

Also, don’t forget it’s International Day of the Sloth on October 20th, in case your kid needs another excuse to rock the sloth costume during the month of October.

Sloth costume for the whole family

This one comes in both adult and kid size! Imagine the joy that will come from dressing up the whole family as three toed sloths and taking a slow stroll through the neighbourhood.

Sloth Mascot costume

I think this is the Pale Throated Three Toed Sloth. Would you agree?

Sloth mask for kids

Has your little one got an animal dress up party to go to? Or a school performance? You don’t want anything too extravagant, but it’s gotta be cute right?

Adult cosplay sloth costume

This one’s made from polar fleece, so should keep you cozy and warm as you sloth on the couch (either at home or at the party).

Flash Slothmore mask

Team this with a green shirt, striped tie and beige pants and head off to your job at the DMV.

flash slothmore with coffee cup

Sloth costume for your dog

We must not forget our four legged family member’s need for a sloth dress up costume.

We must not.

Please share your best sloth dress up costume pics with us in the comments!

All about The Maned Sloth (Bradypus Torquatus)

illustration of the maned sloth

Would you like to learn about the Maned Sloth, also known as the Ai? You’ve come to the right place. Read on for all the Maned Sloth facts you can handle.

Where does the Maned Sloth live?

The Maned Sloth is only found on the South-eastern coast of Brazil. It hangs out in the rainforest there, and loves a good humid climate without a dry season.

What does the Maned Sloth look like?

Maned sloths have a short black and white undercoat, covered with longer, pale brown to gray hair (about 15cm long). There’s usually a greenish tinge to their hair, thanks to the algae that lives in their coat.

Their eyes are usually covered by a black mask, and as it’s name suggests, it has a black mane of hair running down its back and over its shoulders.

Males generally have a darker mane than females. Sometimes the girls just have a couple of long tufts. Males might use their handsome manes to attract the ladies.In fact, mane size and darkness may indicate the health and vitality of the male Maned Sloth.

Because the Maned Sloth spends most of its life hanging upside down, its fur grows in the opposite direction of most mammals which means its hair hangs down when the sloth is in its favorite upside down position.

Like all three-toed sloths, the Maned Sloth has 8 or 9 neck vertebrae (most mammals have 7). This means their necks can rotate 270 degrees, which makes finding tender juicy young leaves to eat a lot easier.

The extra couple of neck bones also helps them to keep their nose above water when they take a dip.

They may have extra vertebrae, but they have no canines or incisors! What they have instead is a set of cheek teeth which they use to shear and mash those tasty leaves.

Maned Sloths have three fingers and toes, and use their long claws to hook themselves to the branches.

How big is the Maned Sloth?

Maned sloths are the biggest of the three toed sloths.

Grown male Maned Sloths are about 55 to 72cm long.

They have a tail that’s about 5cm and weigh between 4 to 7.5kgs.

Females are a bit bigger – up to 75cm long and 10kgs in weight.

What do Maned Sloths do all day (and night)?

Maned sloths like to hang out alone, and sleep most of the day (60-80% of it). They are active during both day and night, in an effort to avoid predators like harpy eagles and pumas, leopards and jaguars.

In their waking hours they eat. And move around a bit. They’ve been reported to have a home range of about 0.5 to 6 hectares (or 1.2 to 14.8 acres).

They travel up in the trees as much as possible, as on the ground they are only able to drag themselves along, which isn’t a very effective or enjoyable mode of travel.

About once a week, like all sloths, they have to take a trip down to the ground to visit the lavatory.

What does the Maned Sloth eat?

They are pretty picky – eating only the leaves of trees and vines (although they generally prefer tree leaves to vine leaves).

Each Maned Sloth is a unique individual, of course, and so may have a particular preference as to which species of tree it likes to munch on. As a whole species, however, they are able to adapt to quite a range of trees.

Maned Sloth Lifecycle

As to be expected, Maned Sloths mate up in the trees.

The gestation period is about 6 months.

They have their babies at the beginning of the year (between February and April), which is the period at the end of the rainy season and beginning of the dry season. This is the time of year that the weather is most favorable and food is most plentiful.

Newborn Maned sloth babies weigh about 300 grams and they don’t have a cool mane yet.

Babies start eating solid foods when they’re 2 weeks old, and are weaned between 2 to 4 months as breastfeeding takes a pretty big toll on poor old Mama Maned Sloth.

They move out of home between the ages of 9 and 11 months.

Maned Sloths are fully grown between about 1 and 3 years.

It is not known for sure, but the Maned Sloth’s lifespan is thought to be about 12 years.

Are Maned Sloths endangered?

The Maned Sloth population has declined over the years, in correlation with the destruction of forests.

The area of Brazil that Maned Sloths live has the highest human population in Brazil and this puts a lot of pressure on the sloth’s habitat – the rainforest.

Deforestation due to things like charcoal production and cattle farming is their major threat, but hunting of sloths is another reason the Maned Sloth has reached vulnerable status on the IUCN Red List. They are now protected, but have not yet recovered their numbers from excess hunting for meat in the past.

Maned Sloth Vulnerable

Would you like to help the Maned Sloth? Check out this list of 5 things you can do.

Gifts for sloth lovers: sloth stuff for Dad

Is your dad the kind of guy who just loves to take things slow? Does he appreciate the fine art of just hanging around?

It sounds like he needs a sloth gift for Father’s Day.

Even the traditional Father’s Day gifts of socks, ties and underpants have the potential to be Dad’s favorite present (and you, his favorite offspring) when they show off his spirit animal.

So check out this list of the coolest sloth gifts and get ready to rock your Dad’s sloth socks off this Father’s Day.

This page contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a commission (at no additional cost to you). Thanks for your support!

Parachuting sloth socks

Does your dad dream of adventure? Jumping out of a plane is something he’ll totally do, as soon as he gets off the couch?

Here is the perfect sock for him.

Sloth pajamas

It’s all relative, right? Dad’s not slow. Everything else is just too fast.

Pirate sloth on a unicorn sweatpants

Not for the shy and retiring type Dad. More for the fabulous, extroverted type Dad.

Beware of the Sloth sign

Does Dad have a man (or sloth) cave? This is just what it’s missing.

Sloth Xbox One Controller Wrap

Lounging in his sloth-sign-posted man cave, in his sloth pajamas, playing video games with his sloth controller. Now that’s a Father’s Day.

Slothzilla Shower Curtain

Why not combine this awesome sloth shower curtain…

With this sloth soap

For the ultimate sudsy slothy shower experience.

Astronaut sloth mousepad

Remind Dad that slow and steady always wins the (space) race.

Genuine Leather Sloth Keychain

Every set of keys should have a sloth hanging off them.

Sloth golf headcover

Remind Dad to slooooooow down his swing.

Sloth Car Decal

Dad won’t mind having an extra passenger in the back seat when the passenger is this awesome sloth.

Sloth riding a laser-eyed T-Rex shirt

I knew sloths were badass, but this takes it to the extreme.

Sloth tee

But if you think Dad would prefer something a bit more subdued, I suggest this one.

Sloth trucker hat

Keep Dad sun-safe and sloth-covered all at once.

Dad works hard to be so awesome. He deserves a slothful Father’s Day of rest.

Wishing your dad a very happy father’s day.


How to volunteer with sloths

Volunteers taking a selfie

Are you planning a gap year abroad and want to do something meaningful as well as fun?

Do you want to take your kids on a family holiday but want them to experience the joy that comes in helping others while they travel?

Are you a sloth lover who wants to help make the world a nicer place for sloths who have fallen upon hard times?

Or do you want first hand experience working with a scientific team and contributing to world leading sloth research?

Volunteering with sloths might just be the perfect item to add to your travel itinerary! But how do you do it?

Let’s check out your options.

Sloth Assistant Team Member

Organisation: The Sloth Institute Costa Rica

Suits: Individual, adult, researcher

Length: One month

Cost: $400 plus food and travel costs.

The Sloth Institute accepts two Sloth Assistance Team Members a month to help the technicians and wildlife director in fieldwork activities.

You need to be active and passionate about sloth conservation for this role. You’ll be working up to 8 hours a day in not always very comfortable conditions. The Sloth Institute is not a sanctuary, it is a research institution that believes that sloths are better off with limited contact with humans – so don’t apply for this role expecting to be cuddling sloths all day. You will, however, get experience working with a scientific research team, and will be involved in conducting world-first sloth research.

Find out more about the position here, including how to apply.

Sloth Institute Costa Rica needs interns

Sloth Technician

Organisation: The Sloth Institute Costa Rica

Suits: Individual, adult, researcher

Length: Three months

Cost: You pay for travel/flights and immigration expenses. Basic accommodation and meals provided.

As a Sloth Technician you’ll be working long days and nights, 6 days a week with little time off. You need to be extremely dedicated to sloth conservation and willing to be uncomfortable for the benefit of scientific research.

You need to be fit and healthy, and also have field research experience as well as behavioral research experience. You’ll also need to have studied or worked in zoology, environmental education, wildlife ecology or a related field.

This sounds like a serious gig for a seriously dedicated scientific researcher. Find out more here.

Wildlife Volunteer

Organisation: NATUWA

Suits: Individual, adult, traveller

Length: negotiable

Cost: $40 per day

volunteers maintaining an enclosure at natuwa

NATUWA is serious about minimizing the impact that humans have on animals. Their goal is to spread awareness that people should not remove animals from their habitats. Volunteers can’t interfere with the animal’s natural behaviors, so if sloth cuddles are on your bucket list, this is not the right program for you.

A NATUWA Wildlife Volunteer’s role is to help with feeding the animals, cleaning enclosures, helping with rehabilitation and release of animals, planting trees, giving tours of the sanctuary and more. It won’t just be sloths you are working with either. NATUWA cares for macaws, tortoises, monkeys, wild cats among others.

In return for your work at the sanctuary you will be provided with dorm room accommodation and meals, as well as WiFi. You are responsible for all costs in getting there, plus $40 a day.

Check out NATUWA‘s website and see if it might be a good fit for you!

Family Volunteer Adventure

Organisation: DiscoverCorps

Suits: Families

Length: 8 days/ 7 nights

Cost: $2995 per adult, $2695 per child

excited young girl with sloth hanging from branch

Experience the wonders of Costa Rica with your children, and give back to the community while you do it.

On this week long holiday you’ll learn about Costa Rican culture with cooking classes, dance performances and school visits. You’ll experience Arenal Volcano, hot springs, Montverde cloud forest and beautiful beach towns. Manuel Antonio National Park is not forgotten, of course. You’ll spend two mornings volunteering – helping out with a reforestation project and volunteering at a wildlife sanctuary.

You can request a detailed itinerary here.

Rescue Center Volunteer

Organisation: Rescue Center Costa Rica

Suits: Individuals, adults, travellers

Length: varies

Cost: $50 per day includes meals and accommodation

As a volunteer at the Rescue Center Costa Rica you will be preparing food for over 100 animals daily: sloths, monkeys, squirrels, birds, kinkajous and olingo and more. You’ll help clean and maintain their enclosures and even help build new ones. You will also help by making toys for the animals, and participating in community education projects.

You’ll get three meals a day and I really appreciate the fact that they list their menus online and are vegan, vegetarian and gluten free friendly. Dietary restrictions can be a big concern for many of us when travelling to other countries, and it looks like Rescue Center Costa Rica is very accommodating. I also really like that they have a volunteer enrichment program. Each week volunteers can participate in activities like yoga, quiz nights, night walks and dance nights – for free!

Jess Travels has written about her experience volunteering here, you might like to have a read. And of course check out Rescue Center Costa Rica for more information.

sloth monkey and parrot with caption make a difference

Rescue Center Day Visit Volunteer

Organisation: Rescue Center Costa Rica

Suits: Families

Length: 1 day

Cost: $20 per person, or $30 including a meal. Children under 2 are free.

If you’re travelling with your kids this might be a great option. Tour the Rescue Center for an hour and then hang around for the rest of the day to help work with their team of volunteers. There’s no additional charge for this and you’ll receive three meals in return for your help.

Costa Rica Animal Rescue and Conservation Volunteer

Organisation: GoEco

Suits: Adults, travellers, individuals

Lenght: At least two weeks, three is the recommended minimum stay. Maximum 12 weeks.

Cost: £780

woman holding a baby sloth

This program allows you to work with other volunteers from around the world to help protect indigenous Costa Rican wildlife such as sloths, jaguars and parrots. They emphasize ethical volunteering and wildlife interactions. If you’re really hoping for baby sloth cuddles, this might be your chance. Of course, human interaction is best kept to a minimum, but some of their baby sloths need extra tender loving care – perhaps you can be the one to provide it.

The first week of the program is a language course, then you move to the sanctuary. You’ll stay in home-stay or dorm-style accommodation depending on which sanctuary you are placed at. All meals included whilst at the sanctuary, you’ll need to find your own lunch while you’re taking part in the first week’s language program.

Find out more about the program and application process here.

Are you planning a volunteering stint with sloths? We’d love to hear about it!

Have you volunteered with sloths? It would be awesome if you could share your experience (and photos) in the comments, it would be really helpful for other sloth loving volunteers-to-be.

You can also check out Hanging with Sloths Pinterest board Volunteer with Sloths for more volunteering options.

 


Sloth Conservation: When is a sanctuary not a sanctuary?

It’s always horrible to find out that a charity or cause that you have supported is not really what it says it is. What if the money and time that you’ve spent in supporting a sloth sanctuary was actually causing sloths more harm than good?

It’s an icky subject, but I think it’s important to spread awareness that some people aren’t in it for the right reasons. Sloths are popular, and that popularity might attract the wrong type of people. People who are in it to make money, not to help our beloved sloths.

In my research online I’ve come across a few disturbing articles. I can’t tell you whether these are 100% accurate or not, but I want to at least make sure people are aware, so they can then make their own educated choices.

Please help me to compile this list. If you see something that should be added, please let me know. My aim is not to smear anyone of course, but to make sure that it is the sanctuaries, charities and institutes that are really, truly helping sloths that are the ones that get our support.

Sloths seized from Oregon based sloth sanctuary

Sloth seized from Oregon based sloth sanctuary

Claims that the owner of Oregon sloth sanctuary sells sloths

Claims that oregon sloth sanctuary sells sloths

Investigation into Oregon Sloth Sanctuary: While there’s nothing illegal about owning and selling exotic animals for private collections, it’s not the same as conservation work.

Oregonlive.com report on Oregon sloth sanctuary

Claims famous Sloth Sanctuary is a collection of sick and injured animals behind the scenes

ex workers claim sloth sanctuary is a collection of sick and injured animals
Sloth Sanctuary Costa Rica responds to claims made against it

Behind the scenes at Costa Rica sloth sanctuary

Have you visited one of these sanctuaries? What were your thoughts?

Adopt a Sloth: Top 6 Sponsor a Sloth programs

Our sloth friends are in trouble. Threatened by the illegal pet trade, the tourism selfie trade and the destruction of their habitats, sloths need our help.

There are a number of things we can do to help save sloths (I’ve written about some of them here) and one of them is to symbolically adopt or foster a sloth from a reputable charity.

Checkout my roundup of Adopt a Sloth programs and let me know which one you choose!

Kids Saving the Rainforest

Kids Saving the Rainforest logo

I love that this organisation was started by two 9 year old girls. 20 years on, Kids Saving the Rainforest now runs a variety of successful projects including a Rescue Center, Wildlife Sanctuary, Monkey-Bridges, Volunteer Program, Wildlife Sanctuary Tours and reforestation programs.

Sponsoring a sloth with Kids Saving the Rainforest will help them to give their rescued sloths a better life, and a better chance of being released. The cages that their sloths are rehabilitated in are designed for short term use, for when sloths have been hit by cars or electrocuted for example. They don’t suit the long term rehabilitation required for orphaned baby sloths who are brought to the center. They need to be able to grow  and learn in an environment that simulates their natural one. Your sponsorship will help KSTR to update these cages, and to purchase and maintain equipment for tracking and monitoring their released sloths.

For a $60 donation or more, KSTR will send you this little fellow to say thanks.

Kids Saving the Rainforest sponsor a sloth plushie

Toucan Rescue Ranch

As the name suggests, the Toucan Rescue Ranch began as a sanctuary for toucans in 2004. But in 2007, when a baby sloth named Millie arrived at the ranch, it transformed into a multi-species wildlife rescue facility.

TRR rehabilitates and releases wildlife. They work closely with the government of Costa Rica and specialize in toucans, sloths, and owls but there are many more species that they take care of too.

TRR has a couple of different options for adopting a sloth.

A $100 adoption package will cover the costs of the care of your adopted species for approximately three months.

Toucan Rescue Ranch Adopt a Sloth

Included in your adoption package are the following things:

  • Certificate of Adoption – for you to print and fill out!
  • Bookmarks featuring your chosen species
  • Information Sheet on your chosen species
  • Desktop Backgrounds
  • Toucan Rescue Ranch Screensaver

However if you’d like to get to know your adoptee a bit better, then you might consider TRR’s Celebrity Adoption package.

TRR Celebrity Sloth Adoption package

For $500, or  $42 a month, you will be providing food and care for your selected ‘celebrity’ sloth for one whole year. You will receive a personalized adoption certificate and will be given a contact at TRR who you can email for photos and updates all year long. PLUS you get to Skype with your sloth!

The Sloth Institute Costa Rica

The Sloth Institute is not a sanctuary. It specializes in research and education and works to monitor the behavior, health and welfare of released, wild and captive sloths. TSI does not make sloths available to be seen by the public as they believe it is in their best interest to have as little human contact as possible.

Sloth Institute Adopt a Sloth program

TSI has a number of adoption packages to choose from. Like TRR, you can skype with your adoptee sloth if you choose their premium adoption package. You may not receive as many goodies as with some of the other packages available in this roundup, but I like to think that means more money is going towards the conservation of sloths.

 


World Wildlife Fund

WWF is a very well recognized animal charity. Their mission is to conserve nature and reduce the most pressing threats to the diversity of life on Earth. They have been around for over 50 years, and are working in over 100 countries to conserve our planet.

WWF have a number of adopt a sloth options. You can choose from a $25 adoption package up to a $250 adoption package.

Adopt a Sloth with World Wildlife Fund

Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute

Symbolically adopt a Southern Two Toed Sloth and help Friends of the National Zoo to help save this species.

Choose from a $75 adoption package, or a $1000 package! Perhaps you could hold a fundraiser, or go without presents at your next big birthday and ask for donations instead.

Adopt a Sloth with Smithsonian Zoo

The Sloth Conservation Foundation

Founded in 2016 by sloth researcher Dr Rebecca Cliff, The Sloth Conservation Foundation is a registered non-profit that is committed to saving wild sloths through research and conservation initiatives.

Dr Cliff has worked with sloths in the wild for over 10 years and has published a number of scientific papers. She has seen the problems faced by wild sloths and is determined to achieve lasting solutions.

Adopt a Sloth with Sloth Conservation Foundation

You can choose either a virtual adoption package, or a physical one. If you select virtual, you will receive everything by email – and can choose to pay monthly. If you select physical, you will receive everything in the mail, a great gift idea!

If you’d like to check out more sloth adoption programs, follow Hanging With Sloths on Pinterest.

Have you adopted a sloth? Share your adoption certificates with us in the comments!

Perhaps adoption is not for you? Or maybe you want to do even more? Check out this list of other ways you can help to save the sloths.


Sloth conservation: 5 ways you can help save the sloths

Of all our beloved sloth species, the Pygmy Three Toed Sloth is in the most danger. It is critically endangered – in 2012 only 79 were found. This is of course a seriously upsetting situation and I know you’re here to find out what you can do about it.

But before you read on, it’s important to know that ALL six of the species of sloths are threatened in some way by the destruction of their habitat. Over the last 40 years, 750,000 square kilometres of the Amazon rainforest has been destroyed. This is due to cattle ranching, logging, commercial agriculture, colonisation, dams and mining. Sloths aren’t the only animals having their homes destroyed, of course. The destruction of the Amazon rainforests has devastating consequences for many species of plants and animals.

Deforestation in Brazil

Another increasingly serious threat is the issue of illegal trafficking. Sloths have become pretty popular over the last few years because they’re adorable and all – but this means that they are being stolen from their homes in increasing numbers to be sold on the black market as pets. Baby sloths are the most at risk. They are violently separated from their mothers, and so no longer have breast milk to feed on. They are kept in overcrowded environments, are treated roughly and often have their claws cut to stop them from scratching the poachers – but this stops them being able to hang from trees, which is what their bodies were designed to do. Unfortunately, a single baby sloth can earn a family living in poverty more money than their average weekly, or even monthly, wage. For this reason, sloths can be found being offered on the side of roads and at markets.

Warning: this video of a sloth being stolen to sell on the black market may be upsetting to watch.

 

So what can we do to help our little mates? I’ve put together a list of ideas here – please comment below if you have any more ideas to share. Every little bit helps.

Sponsor a sloth

There are many organisations around the world who work to help sloths. I’ve put together a list of all the ways you can sponsor, or ‘adopt’ a sloth. Check it out here.

TRR Celebrity Sloth Adoption package

Donate items to The Sloth Institute Costa Rica

The Sloth Institute puts out requests for items to be donated to help them with their sloth research and rehabilitation. Just purchase the items from Amazon and have them sent straight to the Institute. Maybe you could organize a fundraiser, or perhaps for your next birthday, in lieu of gifts, you could ask for donations to this very worthy cause.

Sloth Institute Wish List

Volunteer

Volunteering is a rewarding experience in so many ways. Just imagine travelling to and living in a country like Costa Rica or Borneo, experiencing the culture, the food and the environment all whilst gaining skills and helping our beloved sloths. It sounds perfect for a gap year.

Check out this roundup of the best volunteering with sloth opportunities. There’s something to suit everyone: families, gap year travelers and serious sloth researchers.

Also, check out my Volunteer with Sloths board on Pinterest.

Be aware – not all sanctuaries are equal

Sadly, in my research on sloths I’ve come across some disturbing accounts of places that purport to be helping the sloths, but are actually doing the opposite. 

ex workers claim sloth sanctuary is a collection of sick and injured animals

I have read some unsettling reports about the Sloth Sanctuary in Costa Rica, and also about an Oregon based sloth sanctuary. I have put together a list of these articles here. I encourage you all to do your research before visiting or supporting any charities. Please let me know if you are aware of any other reports that should be added to the list.

Say no to sloth selfies

I think, as a society, we are becoming much more aware of the problems with animal tourism. We are starting to realise that it’s not so ok to ride an elephant, and it’s pretty uncool to have your photo taken with a drugged tiger. But have a look around pinterest or instagram for a while and you’ll see that sloth selfies are a thing. They’re just so adorable, those smiles – it’s a dream come true to hug a sloth right?

Sadly the sloths don’t feel the same way about us humans.

According to World Animal Protection:

The Amazon rainforest is famous for its diverse wildlife. And the number of tourists who want to take selfies with its fascinating animals is rising fast. 

Many people offering  wildlife selfies in the Amazon search treetops for sloths to steal. These typically calm, gentle animals are snatched from their natural habitats, forced to live in noisy, chaotic environments, and repeatedly passed around from tourist to tourist.  

Join me and 250,000 other people in taking the Wildlife Selfie Code. Pledge to only take photos of animal when they’re in their natural environment, free to roam and at a safe distance.Thank you for signing the Wildlife Selfie Code

Take the Wildlife Selfie Code here.

Can you think of any other ways to help the sloths? Let me know in the comments below.

Suggested Reading

Amazon Destruction, Mongabay