Happy Slothday! We Love Sloths. See How One Celebrated Her Birthday In Style
Find out what goes into making a birthday cake, fit for a sloth, and see how this animal reacted when she got hers!
When you're young, birthdays can be memorable. I remember my sixth birthday: a backyard party, complete with purple-iced cupcakes and lots of friends. My (now 20-year old) son's first birthday was memorable because of the crowd of family and friends who gathered, and the fact that he had no interest in eating his cake!
Vivien, a Linnaeus's Two-toed Sloth at the National Aviary in Pittsburgh, seemed just as disinterested in her third birthday celebration this year, because, well, she's a sloth! The typical standing room-only crowds that would have gathered to celebrate her special day were reduced to a few socially-distanced fans.
And Vivien was just as sloth-like as usual in her approach to her cake, made of corn, zucchini and yellow squash, with sweet potato "icing."
Viven's cake was adorned with a cake-topper—a sweet potato carved into a number "3" -- a hibiscus flower and hard-boiled egg.
The Aviary's Christa Gaus serves the birthday cake.
Viiven is one of three sloths who make their homes at the National Aviary. The species is native to South American rain forests, and spend most of their time upside-down, sleeping -- which sounds pretty appealing! But sloths are threatened, vulnerable to deforestation and habitat loss.
"People have an emotional connection to sloths—they bring a smile to your face, which is something we can all use right now," said Christa Gaus, the National Aviary's Manager of Visitor Experiences and Training. "Seeing a sloth in person inspires visitors to think about how they can take action, and it deepens their connection."
Kudos to the National Aviary and staff, their efforts to preserve endangered species, and their effort to bring a smile to animal lovers everywhere!