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How Is a Sloth's Metabolism Potentially Fatal?

Sloths have the slowest digestive rate of all mammals. Their metabolism is so slow that during the rainy season, sloths may starve to death even with a full stomach. Sloths spend most of their day sleeping on tree tops and they're herbivores, feeding on leaves.

Sloths live in rainforests in Central and South America. It generally takes sloths several days to digest a meal. The rainy season puts them at risk of starving because their already slow digestion and metabolism slow down even more when there is less sunlight. Sloths depend on outside temperature and sunlight to regulate their body temperature. Cooler temperatures can make the sloth unable to digest its food, even if it has eaten.

More about sloths:

  • A sloth's stomach has separate pouches for foods in different stages of digestion.

  • Sloths spend most of their time in the tree tops. They only come down to answer nature's call, which is once every 8 days.

  • Sloths give birth on trees and carry their young for the following 6 months, during which the young one learns the basics of a sloth's life.

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