Hey, I'm DANGER. I'm 22, from California, living in New York, in love, bored and hungry. I used to live on this site and have cooled off since. I draw a lot and post about animals. Hope you're okay with creepy crawlies.
Shark Week Countdown Challenge Day 17: Cookiecutter Shark!
These sneaky denizens of the deep are so named because of their unique feeding method. They dwell in the deep ocean during the day, but will ascend at night to feed. They are bioluminescent, with glowing pores on their body arranged in such a way to attract some larger animals that may think the cookiecutter shark is a smaller, edible fish. When the larger animal goes in for the kill, the cookiecutter shark deftly latches on to the other animal (larger fish, marine mammals, even the occasional human), attaches with it’s sucker-shaped ‘lips’ and it’s smaller upper teeth. It then digs in it’s large lower tooth plate, while quickly rotating. This allows the shark to take a round chunk of flesh from it’s victim, something reminiscent of a ‘cookie cutter’ shape out of the animal.
For a small (less than 2 feet), rarely seen shark, it has the most memorable bite pattern. There’s some thought that cookiecutter sharks have even tried to take chunks out of submarines!
Cookiecutter sharks are listed as ‘Least Concern’ by the IUCN. We know very little about the status of their wild populations, because they are found in most oceans.
An amazing short video (1:17) showing the bioluminescence of the deep-sea scyphozoan jellyfish, Atolla wyvillei (Coronatae - Atollidae), as seen from the Johnson-Sea-Link submersible with the lights on and then in the laboratory, after capture, with the lights off, exhibiting a burglar alarm display.
Is worth seeing!
(Video courtesy of Operation Deep Scope 2005 Exploration, Edith A. Widder, NOAA-OE)