Panama’s new Sloth Refuge

The Pan-American Association for Conservation (APPC) and Gamboa Rainforest Resort have opened a refuge for sloths.

Néstor Correa , president of the APPC, explains in an article with La Prensa that the idea came about 10 months ago and after meetings with representatives of the Gamboa hotel. The team made the decision to build the area to help with the reintroduction of sloths to the wild. It would also be an educational tool, where people could see sloths during their recovery.  

The new home for sloths in recovery is for both adult and baby sloths.  Correa says that in recent years the number of sloths rescues by APPC has grown exponentially. While "most can be relocated in short periods of 48 to 72 hours, offspring require care that goes from 9 to 12 months." 

The case of the offspring is more complex Correa says, as they will need to be cared for while taught how to survive in the wild on their own. Currently, the APPC has 28 cases of sloths they intend to rehabilitate, most of which are in a good position to return to the forest. 

The area for the sloths will be divided into two. The first is the educational area, where the visitor will learn about the species and observe the sloths the APPC team has rescued. The second area is a reintroduction habitat (1,000 m2 walled forest with trees of the species with which they feed). This habitat is expected to be ready by May of this year and will become home to 14 of the 28 sloths in need of such a place.  

Once they move in the team will face the challenge of teaching them how to survive in the wild. 

If you are interested in visiting the APPC Rescue Center write Visitors to the sloth shelter may also observe other species from the APPC Rescue Center, such as tigrillos, anteaters and ocelots, among others.