Scalloped Hammerhead

Sphyrna lewini

Unfortunately, scalloped hammerheads have been overfished throughout much of their geographic distribution. Their fins are highly valuable, and their habit of forming regular, large groups makes it easy for fishers to take all of the individuals from a large area by fishing the right place at the right time. Conservation scientists have considered the scalloped hammerhead to be endangered with extinction for quite some time, and legal authorities have recently started to agree. In July 2014, the United States listed several populations of the scalloped hammerhead as legally endangered, the first time that distinction has been extended to a shark species. With this protection and similar legal protection elsewhere in the international community, perhaps the scalloped hammerhead’s numbers can rebound and the large aggregations that have been lost in some places will return.

© Shmulik Bloom Photography