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Iris? Camden? Luna? What will it be for National Aquarium’s sloth baby?


Following two weeks of accepting name suggestions as part of a naming contest for the Linne’s two-toed sloth born in Baltimore in late August, National Aquarium today announced the following names for final consideration: Iris, Camden, Waylay, Izzy and Luna. 

Beginning today, the public will vote on one of the following names:
  • Iris – In honor of the beautiful flower
  • Camden – In honor of the city it was born in, Baltimore, and the winning baseball season
  • Waylay – Meaning surprise, like the baby was for Ivy
  • Izzy – Submitted by a teacher on behalf of a Frederick County Public Schools class that selected the name
  • Luna – Meaning moon in Spanish

A panel of National Aquarium staff from various departments, including those from the rain forest exhibit where the baby sloth resides, reviewed and considered all 1,726 entries that were submitted for the baby sloth, the third born at National Aquarium. Although the panel was originally tasked with selecting four names, they were overwhelmed by the amount of incredible responses and decided to include one more option.

The public is invited to visit between now and November 15 to vote on their favorite name for the newest addition to the Upland Tropical Rain Forest and the first born to Ivy, one of the four sloths in the exhibit. After votes are tallied, the winning name will be announced on the morning of November 16.

“We were thrilled with the name suggestions that we received, “ said Steven Schindler, National Aquarium VP/CMO. “From silly to sweet, the names submitted by the public were clearly well thought out. The final names selected are all incredible and we think the public has as tough of a choice to make than we did narrowing it down but we’re eager to finally give the baby sloth a name.”

The naming contest launched October 18 in honor of International Sloth Day, which aims to bring awareness to illegal trafficking and the mistreatment of sloths in Central and South America. The AIUNA foundation, the starters of International Sloth Day rehabilitate sloths that have been injured by power lines, hit by cars or sold illegally and release them back into the wild.

Sloths have been an ongoing part of the animal collection at National Aquarium. The two oldest sloths currently living in the rain forest, Syd and Ivy, were acquired in May 2007 from a private captive breeder in South Florida. The other two sloths, Howie and Xeno, were born at National Aquarium in 2008 and 2010, respectively.

Linne’s two-toed sloths are commonly found in South America’s rain forests, where they spend almost their entire lives in the trees. They are nocturnal by nature, fairly active at night while spending most of the day sleeping. Adult sloths are typically the size of a small dog, approximately 24-30 inches in length and about 12–20 pounds in weight.

The Linne’s two-toed sloth is currently not threatened however other species of sloth, such as the maned three-toed sloth and pygmy three-toed sloth are endangered. The sloths at National Aquarium, Baltimore help to inform people of the plight of all sloths from threats such as habitat loss and fragmentation of forests as well as to inspire conservation, protection and welfare of these and other animals. Forest fragmentation forces sloths to come to the ground to travel to additional food trees. On the ground, they become easy prey for dogs and humans. Additionally, many sloths are either killed or injured when trying to cross roadways, others are electrocuted by overhead electrical lines.

Ivy and her new infant are free roaming in the Upland Tropical Rain Forest exhibit.

Animals, Conservation