Why do hammerhead sharks have hammer-shaped heads?

pema href="https://theconversation.com/us/topics/curious-kids-us-74795"Curious Kids/a is a series for children of all ages. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, send it to a href="mailto:curiouskidsus@theconversation.com"curiouskidsus@theconversation.com/a./em/p hr blockquote pstrongWhy do hammerhead sharks have hammer-shaped heads? – Landon, age 10/strong/p /blockquote hr pHammerhead sharks are the strange-looking ones. They look like someone grabbed their skull by the eye sockets and stretched their heads out sideways, while the rest of their bodies look like those of a normal shark. /p pYou might wonder – what are the advantages of having a hammer-shaped head? And how did hammerhead sharks get that way in the first place? /p pI’m a a href="https://scholar.google.com/citations?hl=enamp;user=FKrC4FYAAAAJ"scientist who has been studying sharks/a for almost 30 years. The answers to some of these questions have surprised even me./p h2Benefits of the hammer/h2 pScientists think sharks with hammer-shaped heads have three main advantages./p pThe first has to do with eyesight. If your eyes were pointing in two opposite directions, say, by your ears, it would give you a href="https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/article/widely-set-eyes-give-hammerhead-sharks-exceptional-binocular-vision"a much wider field of vision/a. Each eye would see a different part of the world, so you’d have a better sense of what was around you. But it would be hard to tell how far away things are. /p pTo make up for that trade-off, hammerhead sharks have special sense organs, a href="https://www.world-of-sharks.com/shark-senses.html"called ampullae of Lorenzini/a, scattered on the underside of their hammer. These porelike organs can detect electricity. /p

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