Sloth Bear

Melursus ursinus

Sloth bears are restricted to the Indian subcontinent: India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, and Bangladesh. They are the only species of bears specifically adapted to feed on insects, especially termites and ants, although they also feed on fruits when available. They use their strong claws to break open hard termite mounds or to dig underground termite colonies. Sloth bears can also be observed feeding on honeycombs in trees about 20 m above the ground. They sometimes show aggressive behavior towards humans and other natural predators.

The above picture was taken at the Washington DC zoo, in August, 2002.

Family Ursidae
Superfamily Canoidea
Order Carnivora
Subclass Eutheria
Class Mammalia
Subphylum Vertebrata
Phylum Chordata
Kingdom Animalia
Life on Earth