Charlotte the pregnant stingray

Charlotte The Stingray's Fans Are Concerned About Her Long Pregnancy

Home / Animals / Charlotte The Stingray's Fans Are Concerned About Her Long Pregnancy

By Melanie VanDerveer on April 7, 2024 at 6:15 PM EDT

And she's still pregnant...

Fans of Charlotte the stingray are getting increasingly worried about the length of her pregnancy, while aquarium staff continues to assure everyone that she's doing great.

Article continues below advertisement

Charlotte The Stingray Is Still Pregnant!

Charlotte the Stingray
TikTok | Team ECCO

While the aquarium staff continues to give updates on Charlotte's condition on Team ECCO's TikTok and Instagram pages, many of the stingray's fans are beginning to get worried about the length of her pregnancy.

In a recent update shared by the aquarium on Saturday, they explained that they are "patiently awaiting Charlotte's delivery," and gave some insight into her condition.

"The ultrasound we sent to our colleagues looked good and there were no signs of any distress," they wrote in their social media caption of a video of Charlotte swimming about happily.

"We will share new developments as they come along. This has been an incredible journey and we thank you for following along! Your support inspires us to continue our research in Elasmobranch Parthenogenesis."

Article continues below advertisement

Charlotte's Fans Are Getting Concerned That Something Could Be Wrong With Charlotte's Pup

While many people watching the stingray's pregnancy were happy to hear a positive update, many others are expressing concern about why this pregnancy is taking way too long.

"Shouldn't the ultrasound tell us how far the stingray is pregnant? Hope she is doing OK," one viewer on TikTok wrote in the comments. Another added, "I feel like I’m being gaslighted by a stingray."

Some fans seem to think she will give birth on Monday, the day of the solar eclipse, but only time will tell at this point.

Article continues below advertisement

An Update Shared At The End Of March Gave More Information About Parthenogenesis

Charlotte the stingray
TikTok | Team ECCO

The aquarium shared an update on March 30 that explained why Charlotte's gestation time is unknown.

"Charlotte's pregnancy is the first documented case of parthenogenesis in a California round stingray. While in a mated pregnancy, the average gestation is three to four months, there is no known data regarding parthenogenetic pregnancy or gestation period," the video explained.

"We performed an ultrasound last week and have sent these most recent images to colleagues in other professional marine science programs. We eagerly await their report after this holiday weekend."

Charlotte's fans shared their frustration in the comment section of the video.

Article continues below advertisement

"All these people asking about if this is real did not live through April the Giraffe," one person reminded everyone. Another added, "In between waiting for Charlotte to have babies and waiting for Howie to molt I’m a wreck. I just want them to both be ok."

Article continues below advertisement

Charlotte's Pregnancy Is Like No Other!

In early February, the aquarium announced Charlotte's shocking pregnancy. They took to social media to explain why this was so unexpected.

"Charlotte is a California round stingray who is currently expecting! Thing is, we have no male ray in the tank!" the caption of a video shared on TikTok reads.

"One possibility is that the babies have gone through the process called parthenogenesis where the cell inside of the egg splits on its own and creates an exact clone of the mother. Another possibility is that she was impregnated by one of our 2 male white spotted bamboo sharks that we introduced to the tank in July 2023. We won't know for sure until DNA testing is done on Charlotte's pups."

Shortly after announcing her pregnancy, the aquarium's founder and executive director, Brenda Ramer, talked about parthenogenesis.

"It's a once in a bluest of blue moons experience," she said, according to ABC News 13. "We're either going to have partho babies, or we're going to have some kind of potential mixed breed, and we're waiting for Jeff Goldblum to show up because we are 'Jurassic Park' right now."

They quickly counted out the possibility that Charlotte mated with one of the sharks and began focusing solely on the fact that she literally got herself pregnant.

Article continues below advertisement

The Aquarium Has Been Sharing Updates On Charlotte's Pregnancy Every Step Of The Way

Charlotte the stingray
TikTok | Team ECCO

In early March, the aquarium answered some of the most commonly asked questions in a video update on Charlotte's condition.

"Charlotte is carrying one pup for sure," the update revealed. "Charlotte's pregnancy is a unique situation. There is no set precedent on how long a parthenogenetic pregnancy is in this species. Charlotte is the first known documented California round stingray to do parthenogenesis in captivity."

They also explained that once Charlotte gives birth, her pup will be separated into a nursery tank and the aquarium will be sharing all the data they collect throughout Charlotte's pregnancy and birth with scientists and other aquariums around the world.

The aquarium has set up an Amazon wishlist for anyone who wants to send Charlotte or the aquarium a baby shower gift.

Article continues below advertisement