Cookiecutter Shark - Sea Creature Fact of the Week

September 11, 2013
soul is full of
for the secret of the
-Henry Wadsworth
Also known as the Cigar Shark, this small but voracious predator reaches only 42-56 cm (1.4 - 1.8 ft) in length.
But don’t be fooled- it has a mean bite and goes after any prey it can find- even the Great White Shark!
Cookiecutters were named
deceptively: rather than producing sweet
treats, they carve circular chunks out of
the flesh of marine mammals and fish
unfortunate enough to get too close.
They have also been known to attack
underwater pipes, electrical equipment
and submarines!
The effectiveness of the
Cookiecutter Shark as a predator comes
from its stealth. Its underside is covered
in bright white photophores, allowing it to
blend in completely with light filtering
down from the surface of the ocean by
A Bite at Night
Cookiecutters migrate vertically
in the ocean: during the day
they stay at depths of 3km (1.9
mi), but when the sun sets they
approach the surface to hunt.
anything looking up from below. Cleverly,
the Cookiecutter sports a dark “collar”
around its neck, which resembles a small
fish against the backdrop of the ocean
and draws unsuspecting predators
toward its waiting jaws.
A Unique Signature
The Cookiecutter Shark leaves
distinctive marks on its preythe Dolphin above was clearly
bitten recently!