“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?”
The creation is filled with plants and animals which use deception to survive. The glow in the dark cookie-cutter shark is a master at such deception.
The cookie-cutter shark is only a foot to a foot and a half long. It doesn’t have powerful muscles and can’t swim very fast. But it doesn’t need to. Lunch serves itself. The shark typically lives between 600 and 3,000 feet below the surface of the water. Looking down from above one of these sharks, you would probably not see it because the top of its body is as dark as the deep waters where it lives. Looking up from below, you wouldn’t see the dark outline of the shark against the light that filters down from the surface. This is because of the shark’s first deception: its underside is completely covered with light emitting cells that match the illumination from above. The deception doesn’t stop there, however. A small patch beneath the shark’s jaw doesn’t glow. From beneath, the cookie-cutter shark looks like a small fish, just the kind of dinner a tuna might like. As the tuna speeds toward what it thinks is a small fish, at the last minute the shark turns and takes a bite out of the tuna. Its open, round jaw takes a plug of flesh out of the tuna – hence, the name cookie-cutter shark. Interestingly, most cookie-cutter shark wounds are not fatal.
The fact that the cookie-cutter shark’s form, deceptions and habits all match each other perfectly is not a result of chance, mindless evolution but of God’s careful design.
Lord, enlighten me with Your gifts that I may not be deceived. Amen.
S. Milius, Glow-in-the-dark shark has killer smudge, Science News, v.154, p.70. Photo: Cookie-cutter shark. Pencil shows its small size. (PD)