Cookie Monster of the Sea

A preserved cookie cutter shark, in a jar.

I want snack, so give me cookie! The cookie cutter shark (Isistius brasiliensis) is as fearless as they come! This small, 20-inch shark can take on giants like whales and larger sharks, and have even been known to mistakenly try to bite submarines. They dwell in the deep warm ocean and come closer to the surface as the sun sets to grab a quick snack off their unsuspecting prey. Cookie cutter sharks approach their victims from below, latch on with their suction cup style lips, bite and then twist. A nice, round hole is left as a souvenir. They get this easy meal by tricking other ocean residents with their distinctive brown collar, which may act as a lure that allows the cookie cutter shark to be seen as a smaller, not-so-scary fish. As frightening as they seem, they do not pose a threat to humans.