The dark brown sloth bear (Q. "meglituika"; pl. "meglituikar") was a native of northwestern Harad and was especially prevalent in the Umbar region. It was the largest bear species in Middle-earth. A huge, slow-moving, stupid creature that resembled a cross between a conventional bear and the sloth of the rain forests, the sloth bear had formidable claws that it used primarily for digging the huge networks of tunnels that made up its home. They could even dig through soft or crumbling rock. These tunnel complexes were more than ample enough for Men to live in, if they so desired. Sloth bears had little fear of other creatures and while not overtly aggressive, they would not let other creatures stand in their way, literally "digging" through them, if necessary.

Large and fat (2500 to 4000 lbs), sloth bears were difficult to kill. Their vital organs were well protected by their huge bulk. Many loremasters claimed that, either their skulls were unusually thick, or their brains were not in their heads (no sage or wizard had ever made a careful dissection of one!), or sloth bear brains were not vital organs, for head blows rarely even slowed them down. Sloth bears ate whatever they could get their claws on, in the mass quantities required to maintain their massive size.


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