A slow poke named Lightning is giving Ohio zookeepers a new experience.
Lightning, a Linne two-toed sloth, gave birth last week at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, the facility announced.
It’s the first of its species to be born at the zoo.
“This is the first sloth baby that our team has cared for,” Julie Grove, the zoo’s manager of ambassador animals, said on its website.
“We are beyond excited that the baby is finally here! We’re ready to provide support to Lightning as she navigates being a mom.”
In 2021, Lightning delivered a stillborn, so the team at the zoo was excited, yet anxious this time around.
They prepared the mom-to-be in the weeks leading up to the infant’s arrival by placing a tiny stuffed sloth on her to get her comfortable.
The baby’s father, a 23-year-old sloth named Moe, was moved to a different area of the facility after his partner “entered a cranky phase of her pregnancy.”
The newborn will nurse for about a month and will be able to hang upside down on its own at 20 to 25 days.
Linne two-toed sloths, who live in the rainforests of Central America and northern South America, are not considered endangered yet, but their population is declining due to being hunted for their meat and loss of their natural habitat.