Smooth Hammerhead Sharks In The Surf


Smooth Hammerhead caught Sunday by Mike Tolbert.
Smooth Hammerhead caught Sunday by Mike Tolbert.

Okay so before you totally freak out, these are about twenty-four inches long.  They are puppies at best.  I am sure the parents aren’t far off since they do come close to shore to have their pups.  Remember the hammerhead that showed up in the surf last year in Ocean City?  Then it was in the bay and people were following it around.  That got some people excited.  Many wanted to see it, some wanted to catch it ,and others wanted to protect it so it could go back out to sea.  It was trending with its own hashtag #ocshark.  It did eventually go out to sea, and then everyone forgot all about it until that article popped up again in the social media news feeds the last couple of weeks.  That is last years shark.  One of these hammerhead sharks washed up in Ocean City, as it was giving birth.  People put the baby hammerhead sharks in the water and the mother hammerhead shark back in the water, but it washed up again on Fenwick Island’s  town beach and was buried that morning before anyone could determine cause of death.  The fact it had a long leader attached to a hook sticking out of its mouth was determined, by many Facebook comments, to be its cause of death, we agreed.

smooth hammerhead juvenile, delaware, sussex county, surf fishing, delaware sea shore state park, sharks in the surf,
Baby smooth hammerhead on conquest caught by Jason Marker … photo by Alac Newcomb

These little ones are this year’s, so far anyway.

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I have had several people ask me if it is okay to handle these sharks out of the water, unlike the prohibited species.  It is fine to handle them, just remove the hook and place them back in the water.  Do not throw the shark or fish for that matter like many people do.  That will damage them internally and kill them eventually.  They are hitting top and bottom rigs and mullet rigs because of the smaller hooks and cut or fresh baits.  The regulations for hammerheads from land via DNREC for Delaware are Great hammerhead, scalloped hammerhead, smooth hammerhead … Jan. 1 -May 14 …  July 16 – Dec. 31  … 78 inches FORK LENGTH.  Shore anglers  only 1 shark of any species per angler, except 1 additional bonnethead and one additional Atlantic sharpnose per shore angler.

Fish On!!

Rich King




hahammerhead shark, ocean city maryland, ocmd, summer 2015,
(2015 June 25th)
Photo of Hammerhead shark in OC this morning … photo from Colin Herlihy ..
From Maryland DNR .. … ‪#‎OCSHARK‬ appears to be recovering on its own. Still in bay, probably to give birth. Biologists advise the public to LEAVE IT ALONE


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