Many loyal followers of THE ESCAPE would've heard of the frogs by now! During 2012 and 2013 I cycled and ventured to raise money for an environmental project aiming to map out the biological diversity of amphibians in a certain area of Papua New Guinea. Thanks to many small contributions from distant friends and fans I managed to fill my digital treasure-chest with 20.783 SEK (3.700 NZD). An amount that makes a big difference for our slimy friends! For a long while I intended to visit the project on PNG to follow up and show you guys where the money would end up. Without any luck I looked into flights from Singapore, Hong Kong and all over Australia, I also considered a complicated land crossing from Irianjaya in Indonesia. It all fell on the cost of things, it was just way too expensive. Instead of PNG I ended up at the University of Otago in Dunedin where Dr. Phil Bishop leads local research and oversees amphibian projects all over Oceania. Dr. Bishop is also involved in the Amphibian Survival Alliance (ASA) which operates on a global level. Phil is our frog man!
Dr. Phil is into frogs like I'm into flying. Not only enthusiastic, he's obsessed. Note the license plate...
1.893 species of amphibians are threatened with extinction worldwide. The proportion of threatened species is higher for amphibians (30.2%) than for either birds (12.5%) or mammals (20.6%).
Above: Maud Island Frog (NZ endemic). Below: The Green and Golden Bell Frog!
The project on PNG has not been running as initially planned and is from what I understand no longer active. I was keen on making sure the money raised would be used for an active project where it will come to good use. Me and Phil therefor found a better option than PNG; 3700 NZD is going to the frogs of Madagascar and ACSAM! It will be earmarked to fund an important meeting to review and update current conservation strategies for the many endemic amphibians of Madagascar! 3.700 NZD is great but shortly after meeting Phil in Dunedin I received fantastic news via e-mail;
Thank you so much Erik – absolutely brilliant the money has arrived safely. And whats even better news is that I have heard from the rest of the ASA team that they have found a US sponsor who will match the funds in our account – so I will transfer your money into the ASA account where it will instantly double! So actually you have raised $7400!
We depend on FROGS!
A huge thanks for all the contributions! It will make a difference. If you want to learn more about amphibians and why it's so important we save them, have a look at amphibians.org! Don't miss WKND FUN and THE ESCAPE on Facebook!