Three is the magic number — when it comes to adorable sloths — at the National Aviary.
Not just for the birds, the North Side destination has announced that its newest Linnaeus’s Two-toed Sloth is ready to win the hearts of Pittsburghers.
Born in Florida on August 21, the baby sloth is named after legendary actress Vivien Leigh. She joins fellow Aviary resident Valentino, whose namesake is another Hollywood icon, as well as a third sweet sloth called Wookiee. Clocking in at 14.5 inches long and 2.5 pounds, she made her first appearance today.
During daily Sloth Talks at 12:30 p.m., which are included with regular admission, you can meet Vivien, explore the importance of conservation and learn how to help protect threatened rainforest creatures. The three-month-old sloth will be hand-raised by Aviary experts, so that she’s comfortable around people and prepared for her role as an educational ambassador. Executive Director Cheryl Tracy hopes that Vivien and Valentino will one day become parents to new sloths born at the Aviary.
Arboreal mammals who spend most of their lives hanging upside down in the tropical rainforests of South and Central America, sloths have a metabolic adaptation that conserves energy.
Craving more sloth time? Starting February 1, the Aviary will offer private encounters (the cost is $150, with proceeds supporting animal care and conservation programs), where visitors can touch and feed Vivien, take photos and learn about the care, conservation and protection of this remarkable species — which is rapidly diminishing due to human activity.