Thursday was moving day for two southern stingrays, bred in captivity at Sea Life Aquarium Grapevine, raised in quarantine systems and now ready to go on display.
"They actually just turned one year old today," said Julie Ober. "It's really exciting that we can successfully raise baby stingrays.
"By raising them in captivity we can actually learn what they need and this can help us protect them in the wild as well. Because we understand them better."
The stingrays have new names, too- Bonnie and Clyde - chosen in a Facebook contest.
Still in the pipeline backstage, an even rare species of stingray, never before successfully bred in Texas or at a US Sea Life aquarium.
"These are our baby blue spot stingrays," explained Oscar Miranda, Sea Life's Education Coordinator. "They were born here at Sea Life Grapevine.
"It's extremely rare for an aquarium to actually breed in captivity blue spot stingrays. We'll probably wait and keep them back here for a couple months. They'll be part of our behind-the-scenes tour for guests. Once they're healthy and grow a little bit we'll move them out on display with the other stingrays."
Another first for Texas happened two weeks ago at the Fort Worth Zoo; a captive bred greater one-horned rhinoceros. It's a triumph for the zoo's program to breed endangered species. There are only a couple thousand greater one-horned rhinos left in the wild - in Nepal and India.
"The Zoo has been working with Rhino species and we've bred the white rhinos and the black rhinos but we have never bred the Asian One-Horn," said Zoo Director Michael Fouraker. "This is the first time for the Fort Worth Zoo, the first time for Texas and we are glad to introduce her.
"The baby is doing great. She's very precocious. You can see (by watching her) she's been in the water. She follows mama very closely. She ventures out a little bit but once mama snorts she is right back by her side."
What the little girl does not yet have is a name. But, Fouraker said, that will happen soon.
"We want the community involved in that. We're doing a naming contest. They can go to our web site or our Facebook page. We've got a list of names to select from and we'll have a prize for one of those who selects the winning name."
The baby rhino was fathered by Arun. He was a gift from the King of Nepal more than 20 years ago.
Mom, named Shanti, is on loan from the San Francisco zoo.
KDFW FOX 4
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