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Chicago's Orphaned Otter 'Pup 681' Gets A Real Name

"Pup 681" during a feeding at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago.
Brenna Hernandez
Shedd Aqarium
"Pup 681" during a feeding at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago.

An orphaned southern sea otter pup that was rescued from the California coast and ended up at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium might well be over the moon about her new name: Luna.

The otter had been designated "Pup 681" by the aquarium, which held a contest to name her. More than 10,000 votes were cast, and the name Luna beat out Cali, Ellie, Poppy and Ana.

The name Luna is meant to signify California's Half Moon Bay, near where the pup was rescued.

As we reported last month, Luna was a mere 2 pounds when she was found in October on Coastaways Beach between San Mateo and Santa Cruz, Calif., by someone who was out for a walk. She first went to the Monterey Bay Aquarium but was later moved to Shedd.

The Chicago Tribune says:

"A team of trainers and marine staff at Shedd have been devoted to providing 24-7 care to Luna since her arrival in late October. She was one of the tiniest otters ever rescued by the Monterey Bay Aquarium's team and has come incredibly far. Now almost twelve weeks old, the pup is up to 14 pounds from just 2.

"Luna receives eight feeding sessions daily and four types of seafood have been added to her diet. She still is fed from a bottle and is learning essential behavior for her survival like foraging for food and grooming on her own."

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Scott Neuman is a reporter and editor, working mainly on breaking news for NPR's digital and radio platforms.