That is George on the left. He is more formally called Achatinella apexfulva. A species of snail.
That is Toughie on the right. A Rabb's fringe-limbed tree frog.
They were endlings.
Endlings are the last of their respective species.
When the species its down to its endling, it is "functionally extinct."
Another way of saying, unable to breed because they are literally
All alone in the world.
They are no more.
George died earlier this year in January 2019.
Toughie died in 2016.
A scientist, a human named David cared for George for years.
A kind of hospice.
A sad duty to care for endlings.
It happens over and over again and more frequently than ever across the planet.
When Mark, Toughie's caregiver, heard Toughie vocalize two years ago
Singing for a mate,
There was no other frog like Toughie on the planet to hear his song.
Both George's and Toughie's kind died off because of humans needing
what humans need and not paying attention to how our need affects other creatures.
And even worse, not caring.
People like David and Mark and their colleagues spend their lives....caring.
I like sharing the planet with people like David and Mark.
It gives me hope.