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You can now name the first baby sloth born at the Virginia Zoo

Our suggestions: Speedy, Hercules, Alex, Hulu.

Written by
Anna Rahmanan
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Sloth parents Honey and Mervin would like to announce the birth of their baby sloth, the first ever at the Virginia Zoo. Congratulations! 

We're kidding, of course. Well, sort of. The sloth was born on March 8 at the zoo, according to an announcement on the venue's website. Here is the cutie:

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SURPRISE! 🎉 Congratulations are in order for mom, Honey and dad, Mervin on their first offspring! This two-toed baby sloth was born on exhibit on Sunday, March 8, 2020 and YOU have the opportunity to give it a name. The naming auction begins Tuesday, April 7, 2020 at 2 pm and ends at 5 pm on April 21, 2020. Money raised through the auction will be donated to the Zoo’s Emergency Operating Fund. ➡️ To bid, visit: bidpal.net/virginiazoo For more details on the birth and other photos, visit the blog at VirginiaZoo.org. Someone tell Kristen Bell for us! . . . #babyanimals #sloths #babysloth #twotoedsloth #zooborns #namethisbaby #adorable #sharethelove #omgitssocute @kristenanniebell

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"The infant is doing really well, nursing from mom and eating small bites of cooked veggies from its mom and the keepers," reads the official announcement, quoting veterinarian Colleen Clabbers. 

According to Clabbers, sloth babies stay close to their moms' chests and stomachs to "avoid detection from predators." As a result, the zoo's staff has been staying hands-off unless concerns arise—which means we don't yet know the sex of the sloth.

Here's the super exciting part: the zoo is hosting an auction for the naming rights of the baby sloth. The individual offering the highest bid will get to name the animal. As of now, the highest bid is $1,049 and the auction is set to close at 5pm EST on April 21, 2020. Here is a link to the auction. Proceeds from the auction will benefit the zoo's own emergency operating fund, a necessary leg of the enterprise during these uncertain times.

A few things to keep in mind before submitting your monikers: pandemic-related names won't be accepted and, needless to say, gender-neutral submissions are encouraged.  

To get your creative juices flowing, here are some of our name suggestions: Speedy (ha, you see what we did there?), Hercules (we say it works for a girl as well!), Alex, Hulu (because why not?).

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