Big Hammerhead Sharks

On the Protea Banks diving trips you will experience ‘‘ Big Hammerhead Sharks "off the KwaZulu-Natal coast of South Africa. You can dive with bull sharks, tiger sharks and black tip sharks without a cage. An encounter with a peaceful whale shark is possible in January, February and March. One of the great highlights of shark watching is the time of the Sardine Run, when millions of sardines visit our coast.

Big Hammerhead Sharks - Dive Holidays– Durban Shark Diving in South Africa

Big Hammerhead Sharks South Africa

Rates South Africa diving safari at a glance:

- 5 nights with half board
- 4 days of scuba diving
- Food on the shark boat: sandwiches, biscuits, chocolate, water and fruit juices
- Rates: from ZAR 31,900 - Extension price per diving day: from ZAR 7,800

Booking conditions:
- AOWD diving license
- 25 dives should be certified

The size of this shark is very different from other hammerhead shark species. Like all sharks, it is equipped with seven senses and, thanks to its Lorenzini ampoules, which are located in the head part, it tracks down its prey even under sand.

Should he capture a prey, he holds the animals with his hammer-like head and bites them, till unable to swim, before he eats them.

Great hammerhead profile - Great hammerhead

- Latin name: Sphyrna mokarran
- Tribe: vertebrates (Chordata)
- Family: Hammerhead Sharks (Sphyrnidae)
- Genus: Sphyrna
- Class: Cartilaginous fish (Chondrichthyes)
- Order: gray sharks (Carcharhiniformes)
- Average size: 4 to 5.5 meters
- Maximum height: 6.1 meters
- Average weight: 230 kg
- Maximum weight: 580 kg - as a rule, females weigh more than males
- Head shape: hammer-like - laterally elongated skull
- Senses: he feels electrical impulses from his prey through his Lorenzini ampoules
- Eyes: three-dimensional vision possible
- Diving depth: up to 80 meters
- Skin color: gray-brown - lower belly: pale whitish
- Sense of smell: very pronounced
- Body shape: streamlined
- Cleft gill: 5

First dorsal fin: large and sickle-shaped


- Males: 2.3 to 2.7 meters & 51 kg
- Females: 2.5 to 3.0 meters & 41 kg
- Pregnancy: every 24 months
- Gestation period: 11 months
- Birth: viviparous
- Number of young sharks at birth: 6 to 42 young sharks
- Baby size at birth: 50 to 70 cm
- Wandering behaviour: long distances
- Enemies: Orcas, Bull Sharks, Tiger Sharks & Great White Sharks
- Special feature: Young sharks in particular are preyed on by bull sharks.
- Disribution areas: tropical and subtropical coastal waters
- Distribution areas in South Africa: Garden Route, Plettenberg Bay, Protea Banks
- Hunting: active at night - during the day it forms schools
- Diet: stingrays, groupers, rays, sardines (Sardine Run), herrings, cuttlefish, small smooth sharks and other smaller shark species
- Shark accidents with people: shy and peaceful, but dangerous if the diving behavior is incorrect
Red list: endangered

There are a total of eight species of hammerhead sharks, which we have sorted according to type and maximum length in the following table, with the corona hammerhead being the smallest species.

Shark species meter
  • Great hammerheads 6.1 meter
  • Smooth hammerheads 4.0 meter
  • Bow-forehead hammerheads 3.7 meter
  • Spoonhead Hammerheads 1.5 meter
  • Shovel-nose hammerheads 1.5 meter
  • Small-eye hammerheads 1.5 meter
  • Corona hammerheads 0.92 meter
Protea Banks - Shark Watching
From June to September the "great hammerhead" is very rare in the Protea Bank, but we see many bow-fronted hammerheads in very large schools from mid-October to mid-January. 100 to 1,000 sharks can be observed daily. Find out more on the following page about the shark season.

If you start your vacation in Cape Town, we would like to offer you shark diving in Gansbaai. The diving area of ​​the "Great White Shark" is approx. 200 km from Cape Town. You can reach us with an inexpensive self-drive, but we will be happy to pick you up from Hermanus or Cape Town for a day tour.

In contrast to our ocean safaris in the Durban area, however, only cage diving is possible in Gansbaai, as the visibility is sometimes only 3 meters. Diving without a cage would be too dangerous for inexperienced recreational divers. You do not need a diving license for our shark tours in the Cape Town area, as a snorkel is sufficient for cage diving.

Please contact us for further information or requests.

Your Cape Town shark diving team

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Contact for Big Hammerhead Sharks