You’ve tried ritualistically burning every gift your low-life ex ever gave you, but somehow the inferno failed to bring the satisfaction of closure. Now it’s mid-February and everywhere you turn you see roses and heart-shaped chocolates and teddy bears, and it’s enough to make you sick. If you’re feeling a little jaded this Valentine’s Day, the San Antonio Zoo in Texas has just the thing to help you get over that rough breakup.

For $5 you can name a cockroach after your ex and watch a live stream of the hapless animal getting served up as an enrichment treat for a hungry bird. If you have a bit of extra cash to burn (let’s face it, you didn’t spend any money on gifts this year), you can upgrade from cockroach to pre-frozen rodent and watch your ratty ex get swallowed by a snake.


The feeding – while oh-so-satisfying for those whose previous partner’s names get selected for eradication by consumption – is part of a regular schedule of daily feedings at the zoo. The roaches are sourced from professional breeders and are cared for by staff at the zoo’s Reptile House, the facility explains on their website.

Feeding live rodents to snakes can lead to injuries and stress, so to help quell any public outcry about the event, the zoo were careful to point out that when feeding snakes, they always use frozen rodents acquired from a mouse farm and thawed just before feeding time. 

San Antonio Zoo became Humane Certified by American Humane in 2017 – a prestigious seal of approval that guarantees the animals at the facility are treated according to the highest standards of care. The facility is also accredited by both AZA and ZAA.

This Valentine's Day, say it with cockroaches. Image © Jerry Bowley

If you’re more rabid romantic than spurned lover, perhaps you’d prefer to give your partner a roachy gift that doesn’t end in entomological murder. The Bronx Zoo offers starry eyed lovers the chance to “name a Roach for your Valentine, because roaches are forever.”

For $15 you can name a Madagascar hissing cockroach after your loved one and you’ll get a digital certificate to prove it (no guarantees that the roach will respond to its new name).

So whether you’re head over heels or crawling with resentment, there’s a cockroach gift out there perfect for your Valentine’s Day celebrations.

Header image: liz west/Flickr