1 minute read

West Indian Sloths and Two-Toed Tree Sloths: Megalonychidae

Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Two-toed Tree Sloths And People, Hoffman's Two-toed Sloth (choloepus Hoffmanni): Species AccountGEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, CONSERVA


The extinct West Indian sloths lived in the West Indies, in island countries including Haiti. Living two-toed sloth species reside in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela.

The earliest West Indian sloths were arboreal, living in trees. Later species lived both on the ground and in trees. Most two-toed sloths live in trees in the rainforest, an area where there is much rain throughout the year. Sloths also range in cloud forests, forests in high altitude areas that are kept moist by the clouds at that height.

West Indian sloths probably ate leaves. Two-toed sloths are herbivores, eating mostly leaves and twigs. They also eat fruit. Since sloths move from tree to tree, their diet is as varied as the trees they live in.

West Indian sloths became extinct two thousand years ago, after people came to the area where they lived. Two-toed sloths lose habitat as forest land is used for lumbering and farms. There is not sufficient information available to determine whether sloths are at risk of extinction, according to the World Conservation Union (IUCN).

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceMammals