EL PASO, Texas — Spending Valentine's Day alone can sting, which is why the El Paso Zoo is once again giving people a chance to poke some fun at an ex-boyfriend or girlfriend while giving back to a good cause.
This year's third annual edition of the zoo's widely popular “Quit Bugging Me” event features even more of its animals involved in the fun.
The campaign is a simple one: Name a Madagascar hissing cockroach after your ex and watch it be fed to zoo animals such as meerkats, birds, and primates throughout Valentine’s Day weekend.
You are also encouraged, but not required, to make a donation - which will be used for zoo conservation efforts.
El Paso Zoo Director Joe Montisano is also joining in on the fun once again too. He will eat a cockroach for every $1,000 dollars raised, as he did last year.
“Insects are actually the perfect protein and have been consumed by humans since the beginning of time, and they are a special treat for our animal friends,” explained Montisano. “The fact that you can assign a name of a spouse, boss or really anything that is bugging you is just added cathartic release.”
Last year's event was so popular that the zoo received more than 20,000 name submissions from 97 countries and raised over $12,000 in donations.
The feedings will be streamed online on the El Paso Zoo Facebook page and at the Zoo’s amphitheater with limited capacity on Saturday, Feb. 13, and on Valentine’s Day, Sunday, Feb. 14.
For more information on “Quit Bugging Me” and to submit the name of your ex, visit elpasozoo.org. Submissions are being accepted now through Feb. 12.
And by the way, in case you were wondering about this fun trivia fact: The El Paso Zoo purchases 1.5 million insects annually to feed to zoo animals.