This passage discusses the animal known as a sloth.

Lexile Level: 710L

Categories: Animals & Nature

Sloths are animals that live in the tropical forests of Central and South America. They spend most of their lives in trees. They sleep, eat, give birth, and travel through trees. They hang from tree limbs by using their strong, curved claws. They leave trees very rarely, perhaps once a week. Sloths have long limbs, small heads, and large eyes. In ancient times, giant ground sloths existed. These were some of the largest and most powerful prehistoric mammals. Sloths mostly eat leaves, but they can also eat insects and small lizards. Sloths digest their food very slowly. Digestion can take a month or more. Leaves provide little energy, but sloths have adapted to this. As much as two-thirds of a sloth's weight can be the contents of its stomach. They have low body temperatures. They sleep 15 to 18 hours a day. They move very slowly unless they are directly attacked.

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