Oro and Chispa, Hoffmann’s Two-toed Sloths

August 3, 2023

Join us in welcoming two new additions at Lincoln Park Zoo! After a standard quarantine period, a pair of Hoffmann’s two-toed sloths have been introduced to their new permanent habitat in Regenstein Small Mammal-Reptile House. There is one female, named Chispa, and one male, named Oro.

You’ll most likely catch Oro and Chispa up high in their habitat. Perhaps you’ll even see one of them hanging from ropes or branches! This species has large, hooked claws that are the perfect tools for relaxing without exerting too much energy.

Speaking of that—sloths spend roughly 15–20 hours a day sleeping. When they wake up, they’re either staying motionless or moving so languidly, they take home the title of one of the world’s slowest mammals.

Both of their names are Spanish, which is the native language in much of Central and South America where sloths are native to. Chispa’s name means “spark” in reference to her highly charged personality, and Oro’s name means “gold,” a reference to his coat.

Oro is 22, which is considered middle-aged for sloths, and Chispa is 7, which is considered young. They came here from the Philadelphia Zoo with a recommendation for pairing by a Species Survival Plan® (SSP). This is a collaborative population management effort among Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) institutions.

Hoffmann’s two-toed sloths are listed as a species with little risk of extinction by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). However, that does not mean they don’t still face threats in the wild. Sloths have become one of the most popular animals for sale in Colombia’s illegal pet trade, a country they are native to.

Oro and Chispa will be living together in the Regenstein Small Mammal-Reptile House ecosystem. Come say hi and give them a warm welcome to Chicago!