Romeo the Frog

When forlorn mating calls went unanswered, biologists set him up with an online dating profile.

By The Scientist Staff | February 14, 2018

Romeo the Sehuencas water frogDIRK ERCKEN AND ARTURO MUÑOZ

After a decade of the single life, Romeo the Sehuencas water frog (Telmatobius yuracare) is putting it all on the line to find a mate. Or, more precisely, researchers at Global Wildlife Conservation are putting Romeo online. Arturo Muñoz-Saravia, a conservation scientist at Global Wildlife Conservation, set up a profile for the amphibian as part of a campaign to raise $15,000.

“Well, hi there,” the profile reads. “I’m Romeo. I’m a Sehuencas (pronounced “say-when-cuss”) water frog and, not to start this off super heavy or anything, but I’m literally the last of my species [researchers have not encountered a Sehuencas water frog in the wild since 2008].” A video of Romeo, complete with an accented voice-over, accompanies the profile.

Romeo lives at the Cochabamba Natural History Museum in Bolivia. Sehuencas water frogs typically live for 15 years, so 10-year-old Romeo has about five years to find a date.

“We don't want him to lose hope,” Arturo Munoz tells AFP news agency. “We continue to remain hopeful that others are out there so we can establish a conservation breeding program to save this species.”

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