Linnaeus's Two-toed Sloth at the Artis Royal Zoo (also known as Natura Artis Magistra), Amsterdam (Holland)
Linnaeus's Two-toed Sloth, also known as the Southern Two-toed Sloth, Unau, or Linne's Two-toed Sloth is a species of sloth from South America, found in Venezuela, the Guyanas, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Brazil north of the Amazon River. They have a stocky build with long limbs ending in two curved claws. Their long fur is brownish-grey and grows downwards from the stomach; the opposite direction to most animals. Each hair has a groove that collects algae giving the sloth a greenish tinge, acting as excellent camouflage. Two-toed Sloths are nocturnal sleeping for up to 15 hours during the day. They spend their life high up in the trees, hanging upside down for most activities including mating and giving birth. They will only descend from the trees to change to a new tree (for food) or to defecate. They are surprisingly good swimmers as their body is streamlined and their fur has evolved to cope with wet conditions. The name "two-toed sloth" erroneously describe the number of toes. They have two fingers in their hands (in the thoracic limbs) and three toes in their feet (in the pelvic limbs). The name "two-toed" sloth is misleading, although widely used. The name was intended to describe specific anatomical differences between members of the genus Choloepus (two–toed sloths) and Bradypus (three–toed sloths). However, to accurately describe these differences, the correct name should be "two-fingered" sloth as the differences occur in the hands, and not in the feet.