Amphibian Conservationists Borrow Tactics from Online Dating

Lonely frog seeking princess. Likes swimming, long hops by the lake, catching flies. Photo: John Wheeler

Online daters can compare the process of finding "the one" to kissing frogs, but a new effort by Amphibian Ark takes the metaphor to a whole new level.


They’ve set up a program to match conservation organizations, zoos, and interested donors, to on-the-ground projects devoted to saving frogs. Taking a page from online dating they call it, “, where frogs find their princes."


According to program director Kevin Zippel, raising awareness of these projects could be crucial to save vulnerable and threatened species. Zippel says, “For every one species of bird or mammal in trouble, there are two to three amphibian species on the brink of extinction.”


The IUCN estimates that nearly a third of amphibian species are in danger of extinction if not already extinct, a crisis exacerbated in certain parts of the world by a deadly fungus that has wiped out more than 200 species.


Amphibian Ark hopes their matchmaking site will help fight this decline. They list projects spanning three continents by region, species, cost, and category. Requests range from monetary donations (starting at $1,500) to staff, equipment, and training.


As conservation blog reports, among the first success stories of the site has been a match-up between the Denver Zoo and a project to save the Lake Titicaca Frog. We’ve highlighted these remarkable Peruvian amphibians before on The Perch, and can only hope that this is the beginning of many beautiful friendships for frogs and their fans everywhere.

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