A smiling sloth pictured clinging onto a crash barrier in the Los Ríos province, Ecuador, has become a global phenomenon.
The sloth was rescued on January 22 by traffic surveillance officials, who quickly published their pictures on the Transit Commission of Ecuador Facebook page. Photos of the happy animal soon went viral, who had amazingly escaped injury during its road crossing.
At the time of writing, the photos have had more than 58,000 “likes”, over 3,400 comments and have been shared by more than 22,750 Facebook users.
En Los Ríos colaboramos con un hermoso perezoso, que pretendía cruzar el anillo vial de Quevedo
The smiley sloth soon made it onto the pages of international press outlets.
Officials later reported through Facebook that they had taken the animal to a vet, who confirmed that the mammal was in good condition.
On Monday night, the Transit Commission of Ecuador announced that the sloth had been returned to its natural habitat.
“The world’s most famous sloth is happy in it’s habitat. Thanks to all for your concern,” they wrote.
El oso perezoso más famoso del mundo se encuentra feliz en su hábitat. Gracias a todos por preocuparse. *Las fotos…
Many of the Facebook users who commented on the photos added that it was a shame that Ecuador’s roads do not have tunnels or bridges to help the animals cross with ease.
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