Pertaining to the Sloth [Hiamoe].
This strange animal is born and lives and dies amongst the branches of the trees. They are rare, and live in seclusion in the trees of the deep forests of South America. That is where it lives. Its front legs are long, somewhat like those of the arms of man, it does not reach a foot, its claws are long like fingers. Its hind legs are short. Therefore it cannot walk on land, it can only move by crawling. From that comes its name, the Sloth. When it lives among the trees, it looks for a branch to sleep on that is horizontal, and beneath that branch is where it really likes. It eats the leaves of the trees, and does not come down. It crawls from one branch to another; it crawls under the branches and not on top. It does this in the night and in the day, when it is awake and when it is falling asleep. It is content in this living, but if it is left on the ground, its pain is clear by its frequent crying. Its flesh is delicious, therefore if man sees it, there is no escape. We should appreciate the insight of the creator. The form of one animal is different from another, so that they have well-being; his good and caring is clear.
[There were 27 animals illustrated and introduced in Lama Hawaii. Did you see yesterday’s blog post from Bishop Museum’s He Aupuni Palapala blog? It talks about another of the introduced animals.]
(Lama Hawaii, 4/25/1834, p. 3)