Via Matthew Cobb’s fantastic z-letter mailing list, I came across this video of an epic showdown between sloth and jaguar. No spoilers, but it’s well worth watching the clip. If you don’t believe me, here’s a tantalizing screenshot (sloth above, jaguar below):

sloth versus jaguar

Sloths are one of my favorite animals. I’ve had the distinct pleasure of feeding apple slices to a baby two-toed sloth. On my recent trip to Peru, I searched in vain for a sloth among the canopy, but they’re excellent at hiding and are seldom seen by tourists. That’s why, when I saw this BBC slideshow of 12 images from sloth researcher Bryson Voirin, I was completely smitten.

Sloths can swim much better than they can walk, and apparently, they also like to ride on boats. For more amazing swimming-sloth photos, visit the slideshow.

Voirin and other researchers recently were startled to discover that one of their research subjects had been killed by a spectacled owl. Spectacled owls are quite small in relation to a sloth, so this was a surprising discovery, emphasizing how vulnerable sloths are to predation when they venture down to the forest floor. The full analysis [PDF]was published in Edentata, the journal and newsletter of the IUCN/SSC Anteater, Sloth and Armadillo Specialist Group.

Via a picture gallery from the Telegraph, I present to you… ZooBorns blog. ZooBorns collects and posts “the newest and cutest exotic animal babies from zoos and aquariums around the world”. Which, frankly, is the best thing ever.

The London Zoo has an elephant calf:

The Denver Zoo is hand-rearing tiny emperor tamarin twins, orphaned after their mother died:

Zoo Basel in Switzerland has a baby porcupine:

And, last but not least, Dusit Zoo in Thailand is nursing an orphaned pangolin, found abandoned on the side of a road:

Awwwwwwwww…