The most popular species are the great h… Here are some facts about Hammerhead sharks. There are nine species of this shark found all around the world. These baby sharks huddle together and swim toward warmer water until they are old enough and large enough to survive on their own. Researchers from Ireland and the United States performed genetic tests on a baby hammerhead born in an Omaha, Nebraska aquarium in 2001. Great hammerhead sharks are viviparous (give birth to live young). Experts aren’t sure if the sharks go out of their way to eat seagrass or just swallow it accidentally while hunting small animals. The young sharks probably travel in schools for mutual protection, but nobody knows why full-grown scalloped hammerheads, which have few natural predators, congregate like this. Like all sharks, hammerheads have electroreceptory sensory pores called ampullae of Lorenzini, which enable them to detect electric fields, including the weak electrical impulses generated by prey, which helps them to hunt. Hammerhead Sharks are believed to be swimming the earths oceans for 20 million years? Studies are currently ongoing to learn more about this amazing animal. Wingheads live in the Indo-Pacific, where their oddly-shaped heads make them prone to getting tangled up in fishing nets. They are one of rare marine animals that can get nice tan. The gestation period for a female shark is about 11 months, and 6-42 pups are born live. The status given to these sharks is as a result of overfishing and demand for their fins, an expensive delicacy. About Hammerhead Sharks The unique ‘hammer’ shaped head helps the shark zone in on prey by detecting the direction of a scent, and enabling it to see prey both above and below at the same time. Unique Traits Their wide-set eyes give them a … As McComb told National Geographic, “[There have] actually been anecdotal claims by divers that they see little fish schooling right in front of the hammerheads’ heads. Then, with a bite to the pectoral fin (or “wing”), the prey is immobilized. A feces analysis showed that the sharks were digesting half of the grass they’d been eating; enzymes designed to break down plant matter are present in the bonnethead’s digestive tract. The hammerhead sharks are a group of sharks so named for the unusual and distinctive structure of their heads, which are flattened and laterally extended into a “hammer” shape. Of the 10 species of hammerhead, only three are known to be particularly dangerous to humans: the scalloped, great, and smooth hammerheads. The great hammerhead shark is the largest hammerhead species. The gestation period for a female shark is about 11 months, and 6-42 pups are born live. The head moves in a constant sweeping motion so that the shark can see in every direction. They are typically olive, bronze or light brown in color with a white belly, and on average reach a length of 13 feet. Hammerhead sharks are carnivores. A typical shark has eight fins on its body. What did the earliest hammerheads look like? In the majority of sharks, the pectoral fins are longer than the first dorsal—but for great hammerheads, the opposite is true. According to the researchers, these were probably large-bodied animals. And in a 2017 experiment, captive bonnetheads were fed a 90 percent seagrass diet. Like humans, hammerhead sharks are long-lived, … "These sharks increased the melanin content in their skin by 14 percent over 21 days, and up to 28 percent over 215 days.” Despite all the tanning they’d done, there wasn’t a trace of skin cancer on any of the test sharks. The birth came as a complete surprise to the staff because all the bonnetheads in that tank were females—and none had seen a male of their species in three years. It is used as a weapon. Their panoramic view of the undersea world is inhibited by two blind spots, one in front of the snout and the other directly behind the head. Hammerhead sharks have a distinctive and unusual head structure. And yet not all hammerheads look alike. They feed on fish, smaller sharks, squid, octopus, crabs, and lobsters . If a stingray is found just above the ocean floor, a hungry great hammerhead will use its cephalofoil to pin the creature against the sand. Hammerhead Sharks are Viviparous, which means pups grow inside the female shark, similar to humans. Hammerhead sharks can swim up to 25 km/h (15 mph). The researchers found that the binocular overlap in the hammerheads' field of vision is up to three times higher than it is in lemon and blacknose sharks—both of which have cone-shaped snouts. Hammerheads are found worldwide in warmer waters along coastlines and continental shelves. On average, the length of hammerhead sharks ranges from 3 to 19.7 feet; the smallest of this family weighs 6.6 pounds while the biggest ever seen weighed 1,278.7 pounds. But testing confirmed that Omaha's baby bonnethead had no paternal DNA; the mother had reproduced by fertilizing her own egg cells, a phenomenon known as parthenogenesis. The hammerhead shark is well known for its ability to make very sudden and sharp turns. In adults-only groups, the fish tend to disperse at night before meeting back up during the day. On an average basis, the hammerhead shark ranges from 1m to 6m+, with the largest being the Great Hammerhead. Interesting facts about hammerhead sharks, read All 4 Diving Liveaboards blog on the most easily recognised species with their distinctive shaped heads. Hammerhead Shark Behavior. The cephalofoil laterally project outwards, thus giving the shark the hammerhead shape, and as a sensory or… Hammerhead sharks have never been involved in a fatal incident. Physical Features The unique traits and physical features of hammerhead sharks serve several purposes and look pretty cool. Interesting facts about hammerhead sharks. The Scalloped Hammerhead Shark is another species in our journey through facts about Hammerhead sharks, and is one of the most commonly found species in coastal regions. The endangered species of hammerhead sharks include scalloped and great hammerheads. Is there any fish in the world that casts a more distinctive shadow? Previous to scientific research, it was thought that the cephalofoils were used to enhance poor vision in the shark but studies have shown that not only do the … It is not known why they group, but apparently, the practice provides them protection against larger predators. Hammerhead Shark Frenzy. Scalloped hammerhead Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Chondrichthyes Order: Carcharhiniformes Family: Sphyrnidae T. N. Gill, 1872 The hammerhead sharks are a group of sharks that form the family Sphyrnidae, so named for the unusual and distinctive structure of their heads, which are flattened and laterally extended into a "hammer" shape called a cephalofoil. In 2010, geneticists at the University of Colorado, Boulder compared DNA samples from eight hammerhead species in an attempt to map out the family’s evolutionary history. Hammerhead sharks have white bellies and olive green or grey-brownish back. All hammerhead sharks are viviparous – a female gives birth to live young that grow inside the female shark, similar to humans. Description: These sharks are named for their unmistakable hammer-shaped heads. One survey compared the gut contents of numerous wild bonnetheads and found that up to 62 percent of all the organic matter discovered in their stomachs was seagrass. At first, it seemed likely that the mother must have been storing sperm; females of many animal species can keep semen alive for years before using it to fertilize eggs. They will also squid, octopus, crustaceans and other sharks. It had never been documented in sharks before. They can range in weight from 3 to 550 kg. This reduces drag while also increasing the animal’s “wingspan.” Both factors enable the shark to swim more efficiently. Hammerhead sharks have white bellies and olive green or grey-brownish back. This family belongs to the order Carcharhiniformes and has two genera: Eusphyra and Sphyrna, the first with one species and the latter with the remaining nine.All hammerhead sharks are easily recognized by the unique and striking head they have, which is the origin of their name in English (Hammerhead shark). Fun Facts on Hammerhead Sharks! In 2009, biologist Michelle McComb and her team captured live bonnetheads, winghead sharks, and scalloped hammerheads to test their vision. Hammerheads are usually gray-brown to olive-green on top. Also the hammer-like shape of the head may have evolved (at least in part) to enhance the animal’s vision. It was previously believed that sharks reproduced only sexually. Many, but not necessarily mutually exclusive functions have been proposed for the hammer-like shape of the head, including sensory reception, vision, manoeuvering, and prey manipulation. Divers have little trouble recognizing a hammerhead when they see one. The longest great hammerhead on record was 6.1 m (20 ft). Although the researchers didn’t find a difference in sensitivity to the electric fields between a hammerhead and a cone-nosed sandbar shark, the hammerhead was able to search a larger area, which the researchers say would “increase the probability of prey-encounter.” The researchers also noted that the hammerhead was more maneuverable than the sandbar shark. They also argued that today’s modestly-sized bonnethead and winghead sharks independently evolved from big ancestors. But the shark doesn't always escape unscathed: Great hammerheads are often found with stingray barbs on their faces. Though many sharks are solitary creatures, scalloped hammerheads—which can reach lengths of 10 to 12 feet and can weigh in at 300 pounds or … Facts about hammerhead sharks August 6, 2017 August 5, 2017 admintag Among all the inhabitants of the sea who attack a person, the most terrible is a shark. Although sharks have a reputation as destructive beasts that attack almost anything that enters their water habitat, the actual number of shark attacks is probably lower than you imagine. They can reach 3 to 20 feet in length and up to 1000 pounds in weight. A hammerhead shark uses its wide head to trap stingrays by pinning them to the seafloor. Hammerhead Shark Facts for Kids Hammerhead sharks can grow up to a length of 20 feet and weigh around 1,000 pounds. This unique eye placement allows them a 360 degree vertical view, which gives them a unique advantage against approaching predators and prey by allowing them to see what is above and below them simultaneously. FUN FACT The scientific genus name of most hammerhead sharks is Sphyrna, which comes from the Greek word for hammer. The fossil record tells us sharks have existed for at least 420 million years—so if the University of Colorado team is correct, hammerheads are relative newcomers on the world stage. The “Hammer” Head – The uniquely shaped head that all hammerhead sharks share is called a cephalofoil. It’s a myth that sharks don’t get cancer, but young scalloped hammerheads appear to develop cancer-free suntans. Hammerhead sharks as a whole will feed on a wide variety of prey. They may migrate seasonally, moving equatorward during the winter and poleward during the summer. Some scientists have theorized that the hammer-like shape of the head may have evolved to enhance the shark’s vision. Most of the members are gray in color and have some greenish tint with white bellies. These sharks are further classified into two genera - genus Sphyrna (with 8 species to its credit) and genus Eusphyra (with the winghead shark as the lone species). The scalloped hammerhead isn’t the only species which creates schools: The smooth hammerhead (Sphyrna zygaena) also travels in groups. Required fields are marked *. Why’d they do this? Costa Rica Hammerhead Sharks - 7 facts you may not know about this magnificent shark found in large numbers around Costa Rica Isla del Cocos FUN FACT The scientific genus name of most hammerhead sharks is Sphyrna, which comes from the Greek word for hammer. Hammerhead shark facts for kids are coming in our education group of facts for kids to learn more about the world and the whole universe. These partly blocked ultraviolet light, leaving the skin under the filter paler than the skin that had been exposed to the sun. Watch Shark Superhighway, a PG-rated National Geographic documentary about hammerhead shark conservation. During the summer, hammerheads participate in a mass migration to search for cooler waters. The hammerhead family ranges from dark brown to grey on their dorsal side and have a grey or white belly, sometimes even olive in colour which performs as a sort of camouflage while hunting. In years with warm El Niño conditions, hammerhead sharks may range many hundreds of kilometres farther than normal. They attached recording devices right below the sharks’ corneas and monitored the fishes' eye movements while sweeping light beams across their faces. They have disproportionately small mouths and seem to do a lot of bottom-hunting. These sharks are know for their unique shape of their head which is flattened and elongated. The Great Hammerhead shark weighs around 1,000 pounds. Your email address will not be published. If their secret is ever unlocked, it could revolutionize the way we treat melanoma in human beings. The young are then left in nurseries where there is plenty of food and usually lots of protection too, where they can grow and develop free from predators, or at least from as many predators as might be found in the ocean. They are typically olive, bronze or light brown in color with a white belly, and on average reach a length of 13 feet. Hammerhead sharks are also threatened by culling through lethal shark control programs. Hammerhead sharks are carnivores. The great and the scalloped hammerheads are listed on the World Conservation Union’s (IUCN) 2008 Red List as endangered, whereas the smalleye hammerhead is listed as vulnerable. In six years (2012-2018), 592 hammerheads sharks have been culled at an average of 99 per year (6). A small percentage of the population, mostly or all females, are much larger. Great hammerhead sharks have a very wide head with an eye at either end. Facts about Hammerhead Sharks 4: the bottom of the ocean Hammerhead sharks will stalk their prey by spending the time at the ocean bottom. The heaviest known great hammerhead is a 4.4 m (14 ft) long, 580 kg (1,280 lb) female caught off Boca Grande, Florida in 2006. Either way, the bonnethead now qualifies as the only omnivorous shark known to science. Not only does the hammer at as an organ of balance, but its body seems to be specifically designed to twist and bend. Here are some facts about Hammerhead sharks. Great hammerhead sharks have a notch in the center of their head, which is known as a cephalofoil. Hammerheads, like all other sharks, have sensory organs that can detect the electric fields of prey in the water; some scientists hypothesize that the broad cephalofoils allow hammerheads to have more of these organs—therefore allowing them to better sense prey. There are 10 species of hammerhead shark. Though many sharks are solitary creatures, scalloped hammerheads—which can reach lengths of 10 to 12 feet and can weigh in at 300 pounds or more—form schools. A 2016 tagging study attached GoPro cameras to five great hammerheads that were living out in the wild. That means hammerheads have superior depth perception when compared to other sharks. Once the baby sharks are born, they are not taken care of by the parents in any way. An international team of scientists surprised the world by reporting that female hammerhead sharks can reproduce without males through parthenogenesis, or “virgin birth”. It can be as short as 3 feet and as long as 20 feet which depends on gender, age, and species. At night time though they go to find food and they do that on their own. Fun facts for kids help increase awareness and understanding of these one-of-a-kind carnivores. Like many other species of shark the hammerhead shark is a solitary hunter during the night, but during the daytime hammerhead sharks are known to form schools of up to 100 hammerhead shark individuals. In 2001, a bonnethead was born inside one of the aquariums at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo. Make your own origami shark with a piece of paper and a few simple folds. To figure out what was happening, the scientists put opaque filters on their sharks’ pectoral fins. The average great hammerhead measures up to 3.5 m (11 ft) long and weighs over 230 kg (510 lb). The behavior may have something to do with their migration patterns or mating habits [PDF]. Keen-eyed observers can tell most of these guys apart by the slight differences in their skull shapes. They can reach 3 to 20 feet in length and up to 1000 pounds in weight. The cephalofoil has a gentle curve in juvenile sharks but becomes straight as the shark ages. Their bellies are white which allows them to blend into the ocean when viewed from the bottom and sneak up on their prey. Three hammerhead species have a high risk of extinction: the great hammerhead, which is threatened by the shark fin trade and bycatch (unwanted fish captured as a byproduct of commercial fishing); the winghead (Eusphyra blochii), whose population is believed to have declined 50 percent in 42 years from overfishing and net entanglement; and the scalloped hammerhead (Sphyrna lewini), which, in 2014, became the first shark to ever receive protection from the U.S. This shark's unusual name comes from the unusual shape of its head, an amazing piece of anatomy built to maximize the fish's ability to find its favorite meal: stingrays. The hammerhead sharks are a group of sharks so named for the unusual and distinctive structure of their heads, which are flattened and laterally extended into a “hammer” shape. The positioning of the eyes, mounted on the sides of the shark’s distinctive hammer head, gives the shark good 360° vision in the vertical plane, meaning they can see above and below them at all times. There are nine different species of hammerhead shark, and each has its own unique traits and adaptations. The scalloped bonnethead (Sphyrna corona) is the smallest species of hammerhead shark, measures up to 92 centimeters (36 inches) long. Both of them are often hunted by human beings due to the expensive … Since sharks do not have mineralized bones and rarely fossilize, their teeth alone are commonly found as fossils. Hammerhead sharks are silver-grey to grey-brown in colour with white undersides. Rather than waste away, the sharks gained weight. The genetic tests proved that there was no “DNA of male origin” in the baby hammerhead. Great hammerhead shark. This happens because hammerheads are often cruising in shallow water or near the surface for extended periods of time. Their heads help improve movement and hunting ability. Hammerhead sharks take advantage of their wide, flat heads to pin down stingrays and other bottom dwelling fish before delivering a fatal bite. Hammerhead sharks are carnivorous and eat a variety of fish, although stingrays are the preferred prey. Relative to its body size, the winghead shark has the widest head of any hammerhead—almost half as wide as its body is long. Hammerheads also vary in terms of overall size: The smaller species max out at 3 to 5 feet in length, while the biggest is the great hammerhead (Sphyrna mokarran), which can be up to 18 feet long and weigh over 1000 pounds (with 10 to 13 feet and 500 pounds being closer to average). Hammerhead Sharks are known for their unique shape of their head, which is flattened and elongated and passes the sides of its body. Hammerhead sharks are olive-green to gray-brown in color on their tops. Fact 1: The length of a Hammerhead shark varies greatly. Probably the most recognizable is the first dorsal fin; it typically acts like a sailboat keel, helping the shark stay balanced while it swims. The shark's eye placement, on each end … The reproductive process is still quite a mystery in the scientific communities. It hunts crabs and shrimp—and sometimes it also ingests seagrass. A 2002 experiment seemingly lent credence to this notion. They hunt down the prey using the unique head. One theory is that the wide expanse of head allows for a broader spread of this sensory organ. Hammerhead Sharks Facts Facts about Hammerhead Sharks 7: the endangered species. Unlike humans, the mother gives birth to 20 to 50 live pups at once. Great hammerhead sharks have a very tall, curved first dorsal fin … Hammerhead sharks can be found in warm waters worldwide. Experts have identified 10 living shark species in the hammerhead family (although it’s possible that even more exist). Interesting Hammerhead shark Facts: Size of the hammerhead shark depends on the species. According to DNA studies, the ancestor of the hammerheads probably lived in the Miocene epoch about 20 million years ago. Believe it or not, the hammerhead has the ability to sport a nice tan! In addition, these Diet: Hammerhead sharks are consummate predators that use their oddly shaped heads to improve their ability to find prey. Hammerhead shark species can be as short as 3 feet and as long as 19.7 feet. They live in warm coastal waters in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. Learn more about these interesting creatures below. Hammerhead sharks can be found in warm waters worldwide. These fish are diverse, they’re weird, and someday they might change the way we fight skin cancer. These sharks' broad, flat, hammer-shaped heads are called cephalofoils, and no other creature in the world has a head quite like it. Feet in length and up to 3.5 m ( 20 ft ) 20 million ago... 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