Scalloped hammerhead sharks (Sphyrna lewini) are a coastal pelagic species that can be found in many places around the globe including: the Galapagos, Malpelo, and the Gulf of California (NOAA). Many of the areas that they are found in are coastal warm temperate and tropical seas with depths of at least 275 m (IUCN Red List of Threatened Species). When they are fully grown they can weigh up to 335 pounds, reaching lengths between 5-11 feet. One study found female scalloped hammerhead sharks move offshore to form a school when they are smaller than the males, feeding on pelagic prey items with grater predatory success. For this reason, the intermediate sized females have been said to grow more rapidly than the males do and mature at a size larger than males. Despite being the same age, females are larger than the males in order to support their embryonic young (Klimley, A. Pete 1987). Other studies have shown that the juvenile scalloped hammerhead sharks will live in nursery habitats until at least one year post parturition (Duncan & Holland 2006). They need these nursey habitats for protection and feeding grounds during times that they are especially vulnerable to predation.
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species has classified the scalloped hammerhead sharks as endangered globally. In the shark fin trade, these guys are highly desired because of the large size of fins they have. Those fins are then used, in many cases, for shark fin soup. There is no nutritional value to it and it can actually be hazardous to human health due to the bioaccumulation of toxins and heavy metals. Please, spread the word to put an end to the shark fin trade. #FinBanNow
Post by: @flyingturtle13
Photo by: @camgrantphotography