In 2018, a new facility was established to hold confiscated Titicaca Water Frogs, such confiscated frogs coming from the markets on the Bolivian side of Lake Titicaca, La Paz and El Alto (an ever-expanding city which neighbours La Paz). BAI and the Vesty Pakos Zoo designated facilities and began a husbandry program to keep these frogs with the required standards to enable these confiscated animals to thrive, and importantly to use these frogs for educational purposes. The zoo have more than 400,000 visitors per year — most of them from La Paz and El Alto, where the species is sold illegally in the markets, and thus it can play an important role to raise awareness in the society that has a direct impact on the species.
Though the facilities in the zoological park in La Paz are currently solely being used to house these confiscated frogs, the zoo has the space and capacity to work in future conservation efforts of the Lake Titicaca Frog, and other endangered species if needed. BAI has an ongoing commitment in training our colleagues from the zoo and we are trying to start more collaborative conservation projects with the zoo, and also other potential Bolivian partners.
The only limiting factor to these activities is funding, which BAI works tirelessly to try to obtain.