What Are Some Fun Cookiecutter Shark Facts?

Cookiecutter sharks, also known as cigar sharks, are unusual, small predators that commonly attack much larger prey. Their upper and lower teeth are quite different, with the hook-like upper teeth being much smaller than the triangular lower teeth. Their name comes from the circular holes they leave in their victims, which they cut out with the lower teeth and hold with their upper teeth as they swim away.

Cookiecutter sharks attack a wide range of prey, from whales and dolphins to larger fish and even other sharks. They have special lips that cause suction on prey. They thrust their large lower teeth into the prey and twist, creating the circular cut. The hole they leave can be twice as deep as it is wide. It primarily hunts in deep waters and has light-producing organs on its belly, possibly to attract prey.

Cookiecutter sharks are a tropical species found around the globe. They are sometimes found in the open ocean, but they tend to dwell more around islands. They are a solitary species and come together only to mate. Reproduction is through internal fertilization. Females lay eggs coated in a horny casing, which causes the eggs to attach to seaweed and rocks.