Sphyrna zygaena (Linnaeus, 1758)


Usual Size To 400cm
UK Record Weight



No Minimum size

Identification A distinctive shark in the fact that the head has two lateral lobes which give it the distinct hammer shape and hence the name Hammerhead

Colour: upper side of the body brown to grey and the underside paler in colour.
Habitat Coastal and offshore species, found from the surface down to depths of 400m

This species of Hammerhead is the most temperate sea temperature tolerant.
Range For UK waters from the western coast of Ireland and Southern British waters down to the Canary Islands
Food Boney fishes, other sharks, squids and octopus plus crustaceans
Reproduction Placentally viviparous - with litter sizes from 30/37 pups.
  • Size at birth 50/60cm
  • Females mature at 304cm
  • Males mature at 256cm
Additional Notes Numerous un-quantified sightings of this fish have been made, though it is fairly certain that the species does reach our shores on rare occasions, usually in the summer months.
References A Field Guide to The Sharks of British Coastal Waters - Vas 1991 FAO Species Catalogue 4 - Sharks of The World - Compagno Fishes of the North-Eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean - Whitehead, Bauchot, Hureau, Nielsen, Tortonese Key to the Fishes of Northern Europe - Wheeler


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