What is Episode 96 all about?
International Sloth Day is this Saturday and I know all of our social media feeds will be full of cute images of seemingly docile, cuddly sloths. While it’s pretty easy to recognize sloths today, these mammals haven’t always been in the spotlight. In the past decades, sloths’ fame has saved many individuals from harm, but their popularity has also led to new threats that conservationists are working diligently to overcome. So, what is the journey of the sloth? Where does their story begin?
To answer these questions and so much more, today we’re sitting down with Tinka Plese, the mother of sloth conservation. Tinka was first introduced to sloths in the 90s after moving to Colombia from Croatia and finding two badly injured sloths that needed rescuing. After receiving no help from professionals, she took it upon herself to learn everything there was to know about the mammals, from their biology, to their rehabilitation, release, and conservation. She started the Aiunau Foundation in the early 2000s, and since then has released countless sloths back into the wild, starred in documentaries, and has shared her knowledge all across Central and South America with conservation centers hoping to successfully rehab and release sloths. Tinka is also a member of the IUCN Anteater, Sloth & Armadillo Specialist Group (if this group rings a bell for you, there’s good reason. We’ve now had on four IUCN Xenarthran specialists).
While sloths have been discussed a couple of times on the show, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to bring you stories from a wildlife conservation pioneer. Be sure to share this episode and any of the show’s former sloth episodes this Saturday to spread sloth conservation awareness from the experts that know these animals the best.
Alright, friends. Here is my conversation with Tinka.
Listen to this episode.
Watch this episode on YouTube.
Tinka in the Field
Links & Resources
- Ep. 46 Show Notes | Passion Turned Purpose: Rescuing Costa Rica’s Sloths with Sam Trull
- Ep. 58 Show Notes | Countering Poaching & The Illegal Wildlife Trade in Costa Rica with Adriana Aguilar Borbón
- Ep. 74 Show Notes | Conserving the World’s Pygmy Three-Toed Sloths with Diorene Smith, DVM
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