Things don’t look good for the Sehuencas water frog. Years of habitat loss, climate change, pollution, and a deadly disease have taken their toll on this aquatic frog native to Bolivia.
Romeo—a male who was taken into captivity ten years ago—is the last known of his kind. Now, scientists are turning to online dating in hopes of finding him a mate and saving his species.
This Valentine’s Day, Global Wildlife Conservation and the Bolivian Amphibian Initiative have partnered with Match.com to help the amphibious bachelor find that special someone. Through a fundraising campaign, they aim to raise $15,000 by February 14 to support 10 expeditions to Romeo’s habitat to search for his Juliet. Romeo even has his own Match.com profile, where singles can get to know him and donate to his cause.
Romeo’s keepers describe him as a shy individual, who likes to spend his days under rocks in his aquarium in Cochabamba City, Bolivia. About a year after he was caught, Romeo began to sing a musical breeding call, which frogs of his kind do to attract mates. Although his calls have slowed down in recent years, scientists are determined to keep his hopes up.
Once they’ve found a female, the researchers aim to set up a breeding program to save his species from extinction. They hope that Romeo will join the ranks of other species that have made a comeback thanks to such efforts, like the California condor and the black-footed ferret.
Romeo doesn’t seem to be picky. His Match.com profile reads, “I just need another Sehuencas like myself.”
Watch Romeo’s introduction video. We think he’s pretty charming!
Video by Thiago Garcia and Arturo Muñoz