A banker happy to give his name to something that lives under a rock
Some people think of investment bankers as wet, slimy creatures living under a rock. However, Hong Kong-based Robert Appleby of ADM Capital is flattered that a new frog has been named after him.
A presentation was made on Thursday at the Sin Sin Annex in Central by amphibian biologist Dr Jodi Rowley, who talked about her work mapping frogs in the Indo-Burma jungle, where she discovered a new 2cm-long species that was named Leptoalax Applebyi in honour of her research funder.
'He showed the most interest and asked the most intelligent questions,' Rowley explained. 'I've been studying frogs in the jungle for three years. It's rare to find new vertebrate amphibians.'
Appleby is taking the honour in stride. 'I was a zoological major in university but then racked up a lot of student debt, so I went to the dark side,' he quipped. 'I even worked for Lehman Brothers. Five years ago, our firm started a foundation to help students and the environment. One project that really appealed to us was Jodi Rowley. Frogs go from water to land, from vegetarian to carnivore, and they breathe through their skin so they're incredibly sensitive to the environment.'
Both are quick to stress the environmental significance of amphibians. 'Frogs are in a lot of trouble. People like charismatic tigers and bears but reptiles and frogs don't get much notice,' Rowley said.