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Fanged Cannibal Fish Emerges Off North Carolina Pier May 23, 2014
Leif Rasmussen holds the captured lancet fish in Nags Head, North Carolina.
An evil-looking, fanged fish that is known to eat its own kind startled visitors at a pier in Nags Head, North Carolina, after the deep-sea creature washed up still alive.

The long-snouted lancetfish is rarely seen unless it is accidentally hauled up by deep-sea tuna fishermen.

But its large, round eyes, oversized mouth and long, sharp fangs can make quite an unnerving impression to anyone who does come across it.

Lancetfish are also called handsaw fish due to a jagged dorsal fin that runs along their backs. They also have pores in their skin rather than scales.

The one found in the North Carolina Outer Banks was returned to the deep Atlantic, but later washed ashore again. Marine biology experts say that probably means the fish was ill.

Not much is known about the species, but scientists have found that it is cannibalistic. In their youth, the fish have both male and female reproductive organs.

Photo: Jennette’s Pier/Facebook