— First-time sloth parents took it slow, successfully conceiving three and a half years after introduction —
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 15, 2019) – A Hoffman’s two-toed sloth was born at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo Tuesday, May 14 at 12:15 p.m. The baby appears to be strong, and first-time mom, 19-year-old Chalupa, is exhibiting quality maternal instincts.
The pregnancy came as quite a surprise for Cheyenne Mountain Zoo keepers and staff, when it was first discovered during unrelated veterinary testing. First-time parents, Chalupa and Bosco, had shown no signs of breeding in the four years they’ve lived together at CMZoo. However, sloths are nocturnal, so breeding could have occurred after Zoo hours.
“Sloths are famously adored for their slow-motion lifestyles,” said Joanna Husby, Monkey Pavilion animal care manager. “Even successful breeding and conception can take longer for sloth parents than other animals. This baby was worth the wait, though. It’s pretty cute, with dark fur, really dark eyes and the most adorable little nose. Chalupa and the baby are bonding well, and we’re excited to watch this little sloth grow up.”
Husby says the baby’s gender won’t be known for months, and there’s no immediate plan to name the young sloth. Chalupa and her baby are visible to guests in Monkey Pavilion, but will be in an exhibit with a little more privacy for at least a few months. Bosco, the baby’s 27-year-old father, will remain in the sloths’ normal exhibit, hanging out above the guests’ pathways inside and outside of Monkey Pavilion. Chalupa and her baby will return to their normal exhibit with Bosco when keepers and veterinary staff agree it’s safe for them to leave their current enclosed space.
About Cheyenne Mountain Zoo
Cheyenne Mountain Zoological Society was founded in 1926. Today, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, America’s only mountain zoo, offers comprehensive education programs, exciting conservation efforts and truly fantastic animal experiences. It is Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s hope that guests fall in love with animals and nature, and take action to protect them. Of the 233 zoos and aquariums accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), Cheyenne Mountain Zoo is one of only a few operating without tax support. Cheyenne Mountain Zoo depends on admissions, membership dues, special event attendance and donations for funding.