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Cookiecutter shark

Posted on: April 20, 2010

Above the Cookiecutter shark

1. French naturalists Jean René Constant Quoy and Joseph Paul Gaimard originally described the cookiecutter shark during the 1817–1820

2. The Cookiecutter shark Inhabits all of the world’s major tropical and warm-temperate waters. The cookiecutter shark is most common between the surface water temperature is 18–26 °C (64–79 °F).  It has been reported from off the Bahamas and southern Brazil in the west, Cape Verde, Guinea to Sierra Leone, southern Angola, and South Africa in the east, and Ascension Island in the south. In the Indo-Pacific  region, it has been caught from Mauritius  to New Guinea, Australia, and New Zealand, including Tasmania and Lord Howe Island, as well as off Japan. In the central and eastern Pacific, it occurs from Fiji north to the Hawaiian Islands, and east to the Galápagos, Easter, and Guadalupe Islands

3. Based on catch records its migration of up to 3 km (1.9 mi) each way. It spends the day at a depth of 1–3.7 km (0.62–2.3 mi) and at night it rises into the upper water column, usually remaining below 85 m (279 ft) but on rare occasions it comes to the surface.

4. The maximum recorded length for the Cookiecutter shark is 42 cm (17 in) for males and 56 cm (22 in) for females. They have 30–37 tooth rows in the upper jaw and 25–31 tooth rows in the lower jaw. The upper teeth are small narrow and upright, tapering to a single, smooth-edged cusp. The lower teeth are also smooth-edged but much larger, broader, and knife-like. They five pairs of gill slits on the side of their body. The nostrils have a very short flap of skin in front. The large, oval, green eyes are placed forward on the head.

5. Knell every type of medium to large-sized oceanic animal has a scars they have been found on cetaceans (including porpoises, dolphins, pilot whales, beaked whales, sperm whales, and baleen whales), pinnipeds  (including fur seals, leopard seals, and elephant seals), dugongs, sharks, deepwater stingrays, and bony fishes (including billfishes, tunas, dolphinfishes, jacks, escolars, opahs, and pomfrets). The cookiecutter shark also regularly hunts and eats squid.

6. The cookiecutter shark has two functional uteruses and the developing embryos being sustained by yolk until birth. Females give birth to litters of 6–12 pups. The embryos had developed brown pigmentation but not the dark collar or differentiated dentition. Newborn cookiecutter sharks measure 14–15 cm (5.5–5.9 in) long. Males attain sexual maturity at a length of 36 cm (14 in), and females at a length of 39 cm (15 in).

7. The cookiecutter shark is not considered very dangerous because of its small size. However, it has been implicated in a few attacks in one case a school of fierce, 30 cm (12 in) long fish with blunt snouts attacked an underwater photographer on an open ocean dive. Similar reports have come from shipwreck survivors  suffering small, clean, deep bites during nighttime. In March 2009, Maui resident Mike Spalding was bitten by a cookiecutter shark while swimming across Alenuihaha Channel. There are at least two records of bodies recovered from the water that had post-mortem cookiecutter shark bites.

All of this info is from


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