shark ray

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Some of the five month old shark ray pups born at the Newport Aquarium are almost ready to make their public debut. The aquarium says the pups will go on display June 24.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

This just in: Shark ray pups are kind of adorable.

The Newport Aquarium says eight pups born last month have reached an important milestone.

Provided / Newport Aquarium

There are nine new additions at the Newport Aquarium. Shark Ray "Sweet Pea" gave birth to the pups Tuesday evening at the aquarium's off-site animal health facility.

In a statement the aquarium says Sweet Pea had six female and three male pups. Their weight ranged in age from two pounds to 2.4 pounds, while their length ranged from 18 to 22 inches.

Ann Thompson / WVXU


The executive director of the Newport Aquarium is optimistic that Sweet Pea will give birth again and when it happens he's confident his team will have more information about caring for shark ray pups. Eric Rose says the problem was they were not able to digest their food, and consequently did not put on weight. This was despite efforts to tube feed them with a paste of shrimp, fish and vitamins.

Justin Cain / Newport Aquarium

The Newport Aquarium is celebrating the arrival of six shark ray pups.

Here's the announcement:

In a historic biological achievement, Newport Aquarium announced Wednesday that Sweet Pea, the first documented shark ray to breed in a controlled environment, gave birth to seven pups on Friday, Jan. 24, 2014.