Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The chillest beings on earth

In honor of our fresh positive aesthetics outlook we have been discussing in class. I'm going to try to find the beauty in something traditionally ugly and see if we can appreciate it properly. Today's lesson features the some of the chillest living creature in existence.


If you clicked the link you would have been rewarded with a video featuring a three toed sloth on a perilous journey to cross the road. Sloths may not be all that ugly. And we certainly feel more comfortable around sloths  than around arachnids and other venomous creepy crawlys we have been associating with defending in the name of positive aesthetics. But they don't exactly aspire awe either, they are not what we would picture as sublime in a traditional since. Being called a sloth wouldn't exacltly be a compliment, and it is the patron animal of the slow, the dumb, and the dull.
But these things are fasinating creatures. They have so many odd little tidbits about them, I for one could not help but raise a few eyebrows as I read more about them. In a world where the animal population is constantly evolving to be stronger, quicker, more resilient. The sloth takes a whole new approach you almost cant believe that a organism can take such a creative way to carve their ecological niche.
They are herbavoirs so they eat a lot of plants and berries, which compliments there arboral,or tree-living, lifestyle. When in danger, sloths top speed is 4 meters a minute. Luckily they find ways around this. Their fur is unique amoung mammels in that is grows in the reverse direction (the hair on the arm point toward shoulder) because of how much time they spend upside down. Their fur is a living ecosystem teaming with cyanobacteria.This fur provides adaptive camoflage. The bacteria camoflage along with slow movement make it practicly impossible for predetors to find.

1 comment:

  1. My daughter remarked just the other day that she "likes sloths" (she had been watching Dora The Explorer or some such thing). I think "chillest" is a very apt description of what makes sloths special.