The hammerhead sharks are a group of sharks in the family Sphyrnidae, named for the unusual and distinctive structure of these shark heads, which are flattened and laterally extended into a “hammer” shape called a “cephalofoil”.
Hammerheads are found in warmer waters along coastlines and continental shelves. Unlike most sharks, hammerheads usually swim in schools. This schools can be found in Sipadan Island location dive site at South Point.
The hammerhead sharks size range from 0.9 to 6 m (3.0 to 20 ft) long and weigh from 500 to 1000 pounds. Their bellies are white which allows them to be close to the bottom of the ocean as camouflage and blend in to sneak up on their prey.
Research that the hammer-like shape of the head may have evolved to enhance the creature’s vision. The positioning of the eyes give the shark good binocular vision, as well as 360-degree vision in the vertical plane, meaning these shark can see from above and below them at all times also help the shark find food.
Hammerheads are one of the few creatures that acquire a tan from prolonged exposure to sunlight. Tanning occurs when a hammerhead is in shallow waters or close to the surface for long periods.
Reproduction only happen once a year for hammerhead sharks and usually occurs with the male shark biting the female shark violently until she agrees to mate with him.
Hammerhead sharks are known to eat large fish, squid, octopus, crustaceans, and even other hammerhead sharks. Stingrays are a particular favorite. These sharks are common found along the bottom of the deep ocean and stalk their prey. Their unique shape of the head is used as a weapon when hunting down prey.
- April through October is the best time to visit Sipadan Island. The rainy season is November to March. The water temperature ranges from 79 to 86 degrees (26C to 30C) year round.