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Slothy Sunday: Saving sloths together update

Every month, I visit the Toucan Rescue Ranch Release Site in Sarapiquí to check on the progress of the sloths in our Saving Sloths Together program.

Most of the sloths in the release program were orphaned, so it’s important to make sure they are growing well and moving forward in the release program appropriately. Each visit is a great time to progress forward with certain milestones for the sloths like moving them to different enclosures, giving them their VHF collars or even releasing them!  See below for exciting news from this most recent visit!


Mystique the sloth
Photo by Sam Trull / The Sloth Institute.

Mystique is a weanling three-fingered sloth.  She was found sick and not doing well as a recently weaned juvenile.

Over the past few months, she has been recuperating and gaining weight at the TRR Release Site and finally, she had gained enough weight that she was ready for release!  We equipped Mystique with her own tracking collar and released her in an area of the property that we know juvenile three-fingered sloths enjoying living and have enough food to eat.

Mystique the sloth.
Photo by Sam Trull / The Sloth Institute.

Her first night out, there was a little bit of a storm, but that didn’t stop Mystique at all. She did perfectly fine and is still enjoying exploring her new habitat. Our sloth tracking team will be checking on her every day to make sure she is doing well and behaving normally. Because of our success releasing other weanling three-fingered sloths we have no doubt that Mystique will excel at life in the wild!

Ringo, Bowie, and Ash:

Bowie Waiting for collar
Photo by Sam Trull / The Sloth Institute.

Three two-fingered sloths earned their collars this visit! Ringo, Bowie, and Ash are a bachelor group of young male two-fingered sloths.  They have been living in the release cage for a long enough period now and they are the right size and temperament to start their release!  We fitted them each with their own VHF tracking collars and after they have some time to get used to the new bling, they will be released together in a different part of the property (away from the recently released Cafe Britt group).  We have to make sure we don’t release too many sloths in the same spot as we don’t want them to fight or deplete all of the natural resources.  

Cafe Britt Group:

Wild Latte
Photo by Sam Trull / The Sloth Institute.

These guys have been released for a couple of months now and they are still doing well at reintegrating back into the wild.  We weren’t able to get close enough to all of them for a health check (Lenny was too high up in the trees!) but we were able to do health checks on Latte, Chispa, and Chai — and they all looked great!  

Stay tuned for more updates from the SST program!

— Sam Trull is the Sloth Director and Co-Founder at The Sloth Institute 

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