Posts Tagged 'Rose'

Raising Xeno

Last spring, one of our adult female sloths, Rose, unexpectedly passed away, leaving her 8-week-old baby orphaned. We were all saddened by the loss of Rose, and very worried that baby Xeno had lost his mother.

At the Aquarium, we typically respect the natural process of life by letting mothers care for their babies as much as possible. Because young sloths remain dependent on their mothers for food and comfort during their first year of life, our animal care staff knew that Xeno was going to need extra special care in order to grow into a successful adult sloth.

For the past several months, the Rain Forest staff and Animal Care team have come together to give little Xeno the best chance of survival, which meant round-the-clock care that included a special diet, daily veterinary checkups and even some coddling, because baby sloths physically cling to their mothers.

Words alone can’t describe how much love and care was put into helping Xeno grow! The video below shares our amazing story of raising Xeno:

Xeno is now 7 months old and is continuing to develop into a strong and healthy sloth. Our staff is no longer handling Xeno. He is currently living in a new enclosure in the Aquarium’s Rain Forest that will help introduce him to the environment. We are cautiously optimistic that he will soon join our other two-toed sloths as a permanent resident in our Upland Tropical Rain Forest!

The costs of food, medicine and a knowledgeable staff to care for more than 16,000 animals add up quickly. You can help us continue to provide the best-quality care for animals like Xeno. » Donate now

New addition to the sloth family

We are thrilled to welcome the newest addition to the Upland Tropical Rain Forest – a two-toed sloth born in late February.

While escorting a sleepover group through the Upland Tropical Rain Forest, a member of the Aquarium’s education team noticed the new addition. The next day it was confirmed that Rose, one of three adult sloths living in the exhibit, had given birth to her second infant. The newborn joins its older brother, Howie, who was the first sloth born at the National Aquarium in September 2008.

The new baby has been clinging to its mother, and aquarists suspect it will remain that way for several weeks. At this time the sex of the baby is undetermined. At birth it was approximately 8 inches long and fully haired with its trademark claws. As time goes on, the young sloth will begin exploring its immediate surroundings and eating solid foods. Sloths can remain dependent on their mothers for up to one year. Our animal care staff will respect the natural process and allow Rose to care for her baby.

Continue reading ‘New addition to the sloth family’


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