Great Hammerhead, Sphyrna mokarran (Rüppell 1837)

Other Names: Hoe-head Shark

A Great Hammerhead, Sphyrna mokarran, at the Georgia Aquarium. Source: Gary J. Wood / Wikimedia Commons. License: CC BY Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike


The largest of the hammerhead species, reaching a length of six metres. 

Identifying features:
Front margin of head almost straight - with an indentation in the middle;
First dorsal fin very tall and curved with a pointed tip; second dorsal fin, equal to or larger than anal fin;
Pelvic fins with concave hind margins;
Bronze or greyish-brown above, pale below;
Teeth heavily serrated.

Video of a female Great Hammerhead in the Bahamas.

Video of a Great Hammerhead from the ARKive group.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2017, Sphyrna mokarran in Fishes of Australia, accessed 29 Mar 2020,

Great Hammerhead, Sphyrna mokarran (Rüppell 1837)

More Info


Known in Australian waters from Mandurah, Western Australia, around the tropical north to about Sydney, New South Wales.

Elsewhere, the species is circumglobal in tropical and warm temperate seas. 


  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Endangered
  • CITES Listed : Appendix II
  • Author

    Bray, D.J. 2017

    Great Hammerhead, Sphyrna mokarran (Rüppell 1837)


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    Quick Facts

    CAAB Code:37019002

    Conservation:IUCN Endangered; CITES Listed

    Danger:Potentially dangerous

    Depth:0-80 m

    Fishing:Fished for their fins

    Max Size:600 cm TL

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