How Sloths Use Their Slow Motion To Their Advantage
Sloths are known for how slowly they move, but their slow speed isn’t just a funny quality they have— it’s part of why their species has survived for 64 million years.
Three-toed sloths are the slowest mammals on Earth, but you shouldn’t assume they’re just lazy. Sloths are slow for a reason… survival!
They’ve been on Earth for 64 million years. For comparison, modern humans have been around for 200,000 years. This slow behavior means they don’t expend much energy. So, they don’t need to eat a lot. A sloth can take up to 50 days to digest a meal. They have the slowest metabolism of any non-hibernating mammal.
Since they’re rarely desperate for another meal, they don’t have to fight for food with hungrier animals. There’s just one downside. Being slow means sloths can’t outrun predators. Instead, sloths outsmart predators by relying on camouflage, such as algae that grows on their fur. Their main predators rely on sight and movement. So, sloths often go unnoticed by blending in and moving slowly.
Sometimes slow and steady wins the race.
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