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Updated: 06/12/2008  

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Carcharhiniformes  -  Sphyrnidae  -  Sphyrna  -  Sphyrna mokarran

Sphyrna mokarran

All Families(148) All Genera(504) All Species(1287)
hammer: wide, front straight + slight notch
D1: very tall, pointed, curved
height D2 > 3rd gill slit



Sphyrna mokarran (Rüppell, 1837)

Great hammerhead,     Great hammerhead shark

A hammerhead shark with broad, narrow-blade side extensions on the head forming a hammer (width 23-27% of TL); front margin of head nearly straight in adults, with shallow central and side indentations; front teeth blade-like, with 1 point, lower teeth straight, upper teeth oblique, deeply notched on rear side; rear teeth like front teeth; first dorsal fin very tall and curved, with pointed tip; second dorsal fin large, height > length of 3rd  gill slit; second dorsal and anal fins with strongly notched rear edges, their bases about equal; pelvics large, with concave rear borders; transverse pit above tail base crescent shaped, a pit below tail base; tail fin strongly asymmetrical, notched under tip of top lobe, large lower lobe.

Grey brown on back and sides, whitish below; no prominent markings on fins.

Said to reach 610 cm and 450kg, but uncommon above 350 cm; size at birth 50-70 cm.

A coastal pelagic and semi- oceanic species.

Depth range 1-300 m.

Circumtropical distribution, in the eastern Pacific from southern Baja California and the Gulf of California to northern Peru, Malpelo and the Galapagos.

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