89.9 FM Live From The University Of New Mexico
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

After much anticipation, Charlotte the Stingray is not pregnant


Now for an unfortunate update on a story that we've been following for months.


SYLVIA JONES: We are here to see Charlotte the stingray for my niece's birthday. We saw her on TikTok, and I just hope to see Charlotte happy and healthy.

SHAPIRO: Visitors like Sylvia Jones and her family have been driving from all over the place to visit Hendersonville, N.C., to see Charlotte the stingray. She was thought to be a Virgin Mary of sorts - pregnant without a mate.


Yes, she has drawn more visitors to the aquarium and captured audiences all over the world since the announcement in February. And I'm so sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it turns out Charlotte is not pregnant after all.


BRENDA RAMER: She's not pregnant now. Or if it's in there, it's not live.

SHAPIRO: That's Brenda Ramer of the Aquarium and Shark Lab by Team ECCO talking to local TV station WLOS.


RAMER: We saw eggs on the ultrasound. We saw movement on the ultrasound. And then the veterinarians that we consulted - as this progressed, we saw cysts or what might appear to be cysts.

SHAPIRO: Veterinarians have found that Charlotte has a rare reproductive disease that could be harming her health. The aquarium is now working to find treatment options for Charlotte, and they say they hope her case will contribute to science and to other rays in the future.

KELLY: Well, in the meantime, visitors can feed small sharks and rays on a regular basis at the aquarium, and they can catch big tortoises munching on lunch outside.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

Jonaki Mehta is a producer for All Things Considered. Before ATC, she worked at Neon Hum Media where she produced a documentary series and talk show. Prior to that, Mehta was a producer at Member station KPCC and director/associate producer at Marketplace Morning Report, where she helped shape the morning's business news.
Justine Kenin
Justine Kenin is an editor on All Things Considered. She joined NPR in 1999 as an intern. Nothing makes her happier than getting a book in the right reader's hands – most especially her own.