Sphyrna lewini   (Griffith & Smith,  1834) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Elasmobranchii

Image copyrights: Christian Karlsson

Size: Max length 430 cm TL (male/unsexed); common length 360 cm TL (male/unsexed)

Max. weight reported: 152.4 kg

Color: Uniform gray, grayish brown, or olivaceous above, shading to white below; pectoral fins tipped with gray or black ventrally.

Body elongate and laterally compressed. Head "hammer"-shaped, its greatest width 27 to 29% of total body length; its anterior contour slightly convex with a shallow, but distinct indentation at midline; lateral expansions of head very prominent; eyes large. Nares near eyes; outer narial groove absent, prenarial groove extends less than halfway of distance from narial opening to snout tip. Teeth triangular, usually with smooth edged cusps (sometimes slightly serrated by large individuals). First dorsal fin high, falcate; second dorsal fin small, its base noticeably smaller than anal fin base. Pelvic fins low, with a nearly straight hind margin.

Dioecious, internal (oviduct) fertilization, internal live bearers. Viviparous, placental, with 13-23 in a litter; 12-41 pups after a gestation period of 9-10 months. Size at birth 45-50 cm TL.

Max. age reported: 35 years

Adults solitary, in pairs, or schools; young in large schools.

Synonym (s)
Cestracion leeuwenii Day, 1865
(Junior synonym)
Cestracion oceanica Garman, 1913
(Junior synonym)
Sphyrna diplana Springer, 1941
(Junior synonym)
Sphyrna mokarran (non Ruppell, 1837)
(Misapplied name)
Sphyrna zygaena (non Linnaeus, 1758)
(Misapplied name)
Zygaena erythraea Klunzinger, 1871
(Junior synonym)
Zygaena indica Van Hasselt, 1823
(Junior synonym)
Zygaena lewini Griffith & Smith, 1834
(Senior synonym)
Zygaena malleus (non Shaw & Nodder, 1789)
(Misapplied name)
Zygaena lewini Cuvier, Griffith and Smith, 1834
Zygaena tudes Day (nec Valenciennes), 1878
Sphyrna leweni (Griffith & Smith, 1834)

Common Name (s)
• Scalloped Hammerhead Shark (English)
• Kannar (Gujarati)
• Chadayan Sravu (Malayalam)
• Kanmushi (Marathi)
• Magal (Marathi)
• Magala (Marathi)
• Koma Sorrah (Telugu)
• Kannar (Marathi)
• Chadayan Sravu (Malayalam)
• Komban Sorrah (Tamil)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
(Fisheries, gamefish. Sold fresh, dried-salted, smoked and frozen; also sought for its fins and hides. Oil used for vitamins and carcasses for fishmeal.)
Threats:  Anthropogenic
(Heavily exploited by inshore fisheries)

Habitat:  Pelagic, Estuarine, Coastal
Trophic Level:  Tertiary Consumer
Prey:  Teleost fishes, cephalopods, zooplankton, lobsters, shrimps, crabs, also other sharks and rays
Predator:  Orcinus orca (Killer whale)
IUCN Status:  NearThreatened


• Kerala, Kochi INDIA (Record: 2000-2002)
• Tamil Nadu, Chennai Coast INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Gulf of Mannar INDIA
• Kerala, Ponnani Estuary INDIA (Record: 03/1997-02/1999)
• Orissa INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Kilakarai INDIA
• Tamil Nadu INDIA
• Kerala INDIA
• Orissa, Puri INDIA (Record: 1987-2006)
• Red Sea
• Gujarat INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Porto Novo INDIA
• West Bengal (Lat: 21.45) (Long: 87.9) INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands (Lat: 6.75) (Long: 92.16) INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands (Lat: 13.75) (Long: 94.25) INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Joshi, KK; Balachandran, K and Raje, SG (2008) Changes in the shark fishery at Cochin Journal of the Marine Biological Association of India The Marine Biological Association of India, Cochin, India 50(1) 103-105 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at - http://www.marinespecies.org
  • Biology of sharks and rays Available at - http://www.elasmo-research.org/
  • Marine Biological Station, Chennai, Tamil Nadu (2003) Checklist of marine fauna of Tamil Nadu Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Available at - http://tnenvis.nic.in
  • Bijukumar, A and Sushama, S (2000) Ichthyofauna of Ponnani estuary, Kerala Journal of the Marine Biological Association of India The Marine Biological Association of India, Cochin 42(1&2) 182-189 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at - http://www.fishbase.org
  • (2003) IUCN Red list of threatened species Available at - http://www.iucnredlist.org/
  • Dr. Ramesh, R; Dr. Nammalwar, P and Dr. Gowri, VS (2008) Database on coastal information of Tamil Nadu Report Submitted to Environmental Information System (ENVIS) Centre, Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Institute for Ocean Management, Anna University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Available at - http://tnenvis.nic.in/PDF/coastal%20data.pdf
  • Talwar, PK and Kacker, RK (1984) Commercial sea fishes of India ZSI, Calcutta 997 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Hanfee, F (1999) Management of shark fisheries in two Indian coastal states: Tamil Nadu and Kerala Case studies of the management of elasmobranch fisheries. FAO Fisheries Technical Paper. No. 378 Rome, FAO Part 1 (11) Available at - http://www.fao.org/docrep/003/X2097E/X2097E14.htm#ch11.
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51) FAO, Rome 5 Available at - http://www.fao.org/docrep/009/ad468e/ad468e00.HTM
  • Ammini, PL; Khambadkar, LL and Augustine, SK (2008) A brief report on the marine fisheries of Puri, Orissa Marine Fisheries Information Service Technical and Extension Series CMFRI 195 6-10 Available at - http://eprints.cmfri.org.in/3454/1/3.pdf
  • Raje, SG; Sivakami, S; Mohanraj, G; Manoj Kumar, PP; Raju, A and Joshi, KK (2007) An atlas on the Elasmobranch fishery resources of India CMFRI Special publication CMFRI, Cochin, India. 95 253pp Available at - http://eprints.cmfri.org.in/4056/1/Special_Publn_95.pdf
  • Kizhakudan, SJ; Nair, KVS and Zala, MS Demersal Finfish Resources of Gujarat Sustainable fisheries development: Focus on Gujarat 57-66 Available at - http://eprints.cmfri.org.in/6060/
  • Devadoss, P (1984) Nutritive values of sharks, skates and rays from Portonovo coast Indian Journal of Fisheries 31 (1) 156-161 Available at - http://eprints.cmfri.org.in/440/
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at - eprints.cmfri.org.in/3975/1/Special_Publication_No_12_Revised.pdf
  • Das, P; De, SP; Bhowmik, RM; Pandit, IK; Sengupta, R; Nandi, AC; Thakurta, SC and Saha, S (2007) Piscine diversity of West Bengal Fishing chimes 27(5) 15-28 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Roy, SD; Rajan, PT and Soundararajan, S (2006) Marine food fishes of Andaman and Nicobar islands Fishing Chimes 25(10) 108-110 Available at - NIO, Goa

Page last updated on:2012-01-13

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