Pensioner sloths settle into new retirement home at Pembrokeshire's Folly Farm

A pair of pensioner sloths have been making themselves comfortable in their new retirement home at a zoo in Pembrokeshire.

Tuppee, 26, and Lightcap, 36, have moved to a newly built enclosure, which has been specially designed for older sloths, at Folly Farm.

‘Sloth Forest’ features everything the retirees could want including biomass heating, soft flooring and extra places to snooze.

Instead of taking on young breeding pairs of sloths, Folly Farm currently homes older sloths that have ‘retired’ from other zoos - giving them a comfortable place to settle into their twilight years.

Credit: Folly Farm

While the zoo was closed during lockdown, zookeepers took the opportunity to build Tuppee and Lightcap a new, bigger home.

Their new accommodation features all the creature comforts the pair of two-toed sloths need, including biomass heating, soft flooring and extra places to snooze.

Sloth keeper, Becky Dyson, said: “Like us humans, sloths are prone to aching muscles and creaking joints as they get older. Our new sloth retirement home has lots of warmth, cosy places to cuddle up and plenty of humidity.

“The new flooring is made out of cocoa fibre soil which is nice and soft when they come down from the trees. We kept their branches close together so it’s easy for them to climb around and explore their new home and put in a sprinkling system which keeps things nice and humid for them.

“We all know how important it is to keep active as we get older and sloths are no different. We’ve spaced things like their feeding stations and sleeping boxes a bit further apart in Sloth Forest to encourage them to keep moving around."

Credit: Folly Farm

Two-toed sloths originate from Central and South America and are known for being peaceful, gentle animals.

Becky said sloths are one of the most popular animals at the zoo, with visitors always eager to catch a glimpse of them.

"Lightcap is a sweetheart," Becky added. "She’s really curious and always interested in what we’re doing...Tuppee is a typical grumpy old man, but he’s definitely softened since Lightcap moved in a couple of years ago.

"They enjoy each other’s company and we often find them cuddled up together."

Credit: Folly Farm