three-toed sloth

\ ˈthrē-ˈtōd- How to pronounce three-toed sloth (audio) \

Definition of three-toed sloth

: any of a genus (Bradypus) of sloths having three clawed digits on each foot and eight or nine vertebrae in the neck — compare two-toed sloth

Examples of three-toed sloth in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tourists in Costa Rica recently witnessed a magical and elusive event—the birth of a three-toed sloth. Jason Bittel, National Geographic, "Why this rare video of a sloth giving birth has scientists excited," 2 Mar. 2020 More than a third of the world’s animal species live there including three-toed sloths, Amazon River dolphins, Amazonian manatees, anacondas, piranhas, and much more. Danielle Pointdujour, Essence, "5 Trips Every Black Woman Should Take For Adventure This Year," 6 Jan. 2020 Although this species is not threatened, two of the six species of sloth are endangered: the pygmy three-toed sloth (critically endangered) and the maned sloth (vulnerable). Terry Gardner,, "Just in time for Mother's Day: zoo babies in the West," 6 May 2018 Two-toed sloths, like the one the Morgans found, and three-toed sloths are typically found in the forests of Central and South America. Mallorie Sullivan,, "One week after saving baby sloth, Cincinnati couple loses Costa Rican venture to fire," 16 Jan. 2018 November 2, 2017 —In Suriname, the all-volunteer Green Heritage Fund Suriname is devoting itself to the rescue of three-toed sloths. Staff, The Christian Science Monitor, "Meanwhile... in Suriname, the all-volunteer Green Heritage Fund Suriname is devoting itself to the rescue of three-toed sloths," 3 Nov. 2017 Among the six species of two-toed and three-toed sloths, two are endangered. Nicole Hong, WSJ, "What Did Sloths Do to Earn Their Sudden Popularity? Not Much," 18 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'three-toed sloth.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of three-toed sloth

1847, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about three-toed sloth

Time Traveler for three-toed sloth

Time Traveler

The first known use of three-toed sloth was in 1847

See more words from the same year

Statistics for three-toed sloth

Cite this Entry

“Three-toed sloth.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Apr. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on three-toed sloth Encyclopedia article about three-toed sloth

Comments on three-toed sloth

What made you want to look up three-toed sloth? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!