Tiny sharks with terrifying teeth attacking boats off coast of Australia

Glow-in-the-dark parasitic sharks have been targeting boats off the coast of Australia. With rows of razor-sharp teeth the tiny cookiecutter sharks have been blamed for a recent attack on explorers sailing a catamaran.

Three people were rescued from the inflatable boat, and the Russian Geographic Society, which was involved in the sailor’s globe voyage, later confirmed that the hull of the vessel had been attacked by cookiecutter sharks in the Coral Sea.

According to marine scientists, this attack was the result of a misunderstanding on the part of the sharks.

The species has a history of attempting to devour non-living objects like submarines.

Read More: Explorers on round-the-world trip escape death after boat attacked by sharks

In an Instagram update following the rescue, the team explained that the incidents involved assaults from cookiecutter sharks.

These attacks initially damaged the rear left section of their boat on Monday, causing it to become “completely submerged underwater.”

The group managed to continue for another day, but late on Tuesday, the sharks struck again, this time biting through the right hull.

These repeated attacks left their inflatable boat partially submerged, prompting them to issue a distress call to nearby vessels during the early hours of Wednesday.

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The crew, along with their belongings, were rescued by the cargo ship named the Dugong Ace.

However, their sinking catamaran had to be abandoned in the ocean, as described in the Instagram post.

Professor Jodie Rummer, a marine biologist at James Cook University told the Guardian the cookiecutter shark is categorised as a parasite and exhibits different behaviour when compared to other shark species.

While there have been no reported cases of cookiecutter fatally attacking people, they have bitten humans.

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One of these sharks swam through a swimming enclosure on Magnetic Island in 2017 and bit a seven-year-old boy on the thigh.

Rummer explained that cookiecutter sharks are opportunistic feeders with weak visual ability who sample a wide range of things.

They can cause problems for larger animals by inflicting open wounds when feeding.

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