News from the Natural World: Megatherium is enraged by the rise in viral sloth memes.
In the last few years, the Sloth has gone truly viral. The internet is awash with cute images of sloths, their big wide grins charming the hearts of countless humans. They splash their faces across t-shirts, emblazon them on stickers and cherish the beauty of the Sloth. Videos of them crossing roads have also gone viral and a certain swimming Sloth charmed the hearts of the world by swimming to the wrong tree for a mate in Planet Earth. To top it all, Apple even released a Sloth emoji. It was truly the time of the Sloth.
In a deep and distant jungle in Peru, a mighty being awoke, the greatest Sloth of all, and the true Queen of all the species of Sloths. There are six known species of sloths alive today but none of them compares to the one that just awoke. It was called the Megatherium. The mighty Megatherium was one of the largest land mammals known to have existed and could weigh up to 4 tonnes. They measured up to 6m (20ft) from head to tail. This mighty beast was also a sloth, a ground sloth to be precise. Some grew as big as an elephant. They once roamed all over South America and the first skeleton was found in Argentina in 1788.
Megatherium enraged by rise in viral sloth memes
But the Megatherium was one of the first casualties of the Pleistocene Megafauna Extinction. This was a mass extinction of large scale mammals such as the Megatherium, Wooly Rhino, Wooly Mammoth, and the Sabre Tooth Tiger. It rather coincidentally ran alongside the rise of a certain violent ape, the Homo Sapien. This is why it was such a huge surprise when a living breathing Megatherium stumbled out of the jungle in the deepest darkest depths of Peru.
The Megatherium that awoke was called Mildred. She’d been peacefully living in a patch of the jungle hidden away from prying eyes. One morning she awoke to the sound of roaring and a dreadful din filled the sky. The jungle around her was being destroyed by some large grey metallic machine with fleshy apes inside, damn humans! Not those bastards again she thought. She stumbled out the rainforest and for the first time in thousands of years humans saw a Megatherium.
Mildred wandered into the nearest town and sought out the nearest internet cafe. She wanted to find out what was going on and what was happening to her fellow sloths. When she typed the word sloth into Google she was shocked. There were millions and millions of images, memes, and gifs of sloths. Sloths were everywhere and a glimmer of hope flashed across her eyes. Clearly humans must love sloths! Alas, she was proved to be wrong.
Mildred the Megatherium the last of her species
When she googled her fellow sloth species she saw that they were suffering greatly under the humans. Her fellow species were being threatened by habitat loss, deforestation, and hunting. In addition 2 of the 6 sloth species were being threatened by extinction. She was distraught, she decided to google her own species, but when she typed Megatherium into Google tears rolled down her cheeks. The Megatherium was extinct, Mildred was the last living Giant Ground Sloth. She was all alone.
But why was the sloth so popular, why are there emojis and books if the humans continued to kill and destroy her species. As far as Mildred the Megatherium could tell, there was only one word she knew that could sum it all up, HYPOCRISY.
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