Back in time for Valentine’s Day, the El Paso Zoo is again holding its “Quit Bugging Me” event that gives people a chance to name a cockroach after an ex or someone that has been “buggin” them.
The popular promotion helps the zoo in its conservation and education efforts, zoo officials said.
Through Saturday, Feb. 15, you can make a donation and submit a name on the zoo’s website at elpasozoo.org.
The roaches will be fed to zoo animals Feb. 14-16, and will be live streamed on Facebook.
“This year, zookeepers will feed Madagascar cockroaches to different zoo animals such as meerkats, birds and primates throughout the Valentine’s Day weekend – all in the name of pettiness,” zoo officials said in a news release.
Zoo officials said the roaches are “ethically frozen” and are given to the animals regularly, purchasing some 1.5 million insects annually to feed to zoo animals.
“This is a great opportunity for everyone to learn about animals at the zoo and the importance of insects in our ecosystem,” El Paso Zoo Director Joe Montisano said in a statement. “This is a normal part of these animals’ diets in the wild. While in our care, we try to replicate that as much as possible.”
Montisano will eat a cockroach for every $1,000 raised. In 2019, the zoo received more than 7,000 name submissions from all over the world and collected more than $3,000 in donations.