Wildlife Sanctuary Teaches Baby Sloths How to Potty (Video)

Potty training at the sloth orphanage from Amphibian Avenger on Vimeo.

Sloths are perfectly designed for life in the trees, but even they need to come back down to earth every once in a while -- especially when nature calls. For a group of baby sloths at Costa Rica's Aviarios del Caribe wildlife sanctuary, however, learning to descend the trees to make their business doesn't always come easy. But thanks to the patience and dedication of the sanctuary's staff, soon the orphaned sloths will be able to make it all on their own.Because of the sloth's famously slow metabolism, they typically only need to climb down from the treetops to do their business about once a week -- a skill passed on from sloth mothers to their offspring. But, having been orphaned, the adorable slowpokes at the sloth sanctuary need a helping hand -- and lucky for them, there's a few kindhearted humans willing to accept the less-than-glamorous job.

Clare, the sanctuary's 'chief sloth wrangler', offers some fascinating insight into part of a sloth's routine that you likely never thought to question. "In the act of pooing he gets a certain look on his face. It's like they unfocus and just do there thing. And then, all of a sudden when the look focused again, they're probably done pooing."

This unprecedentedly intimate look at sloth behavior was captured by videographer Lucy Cooke, who writes the blog PinkTreeFrog. She's also working on a full-length documentary about the orphaned sloths at the Aviarios del Caribe after receiving such positive feedback for her previous sloth videos.

I am of course delighted that people have fallen for the sloths. They may not be your traditional cutie-pie pin ups, with their terrible table manners and lazy reputation, but they're hugely charismatic and deserve to be loved. Especially if it helps spread awareness about the need to protect their habitat from man's further incursion (which is what's ultimately responsible for all the orphaned babies).

Here's the video that turned a group of adorable baby sloths into an Internet sensation.

Meet the sloths from Amphibian Avenger on Vimeo.

If you just can't get enough cute sloth videos, check out Jaymi's post on the adorable residents at another sanctuary in Costa Rica.
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