Neither marsupial nor primate, Joe the Linnaeus two-toed sloth at Zoo Knoxville is, nonetheless, a mammal. Despite that classification in the animal kingdom, he resides in the Clayton Family Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Campus (ARC).
He’s not as ferocious as the Malayan tigers nor as playful as the American river otters. Joe mostly just hangs around and waits for snacks. He’s not in a hurry to do much of anything (as is the way of sloths). Doesn’t sound like a bad day at all, really.
This particular species of sloth hails from South America, primarily Venezuela, the Guyanas, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Brazil north of the Amazon River. They are only found in hot and humid tropical rain forests.
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Tina Rolen is director of marketing and communications at Zoo Knoxville.