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Winter Flounder Pleuronectes americanus


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Winter Flounder
credit: NOAA

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Family: Pleuronectidae, Righteye Flounders view all from this family

Description The winter flounder, Pseudopleuronectes americanus, (also known as black back) is a right-eyed ("dextral") flatfish of the family Pleuronectidae. It is native to coastal waters of the western north Atlantic coast, from Labrador, Canada to Georgia, United States. In the waters from Newfoundland down through Massachusetts Bay it is the most common near-shore (shallow-water) flounder. It grows up to 64 cm in length and 3.6 kg in weight.

It spends the summer off shore in deeper waters, and winters in shallow coastal estuaries rivers and bays.

Winter flounders are highly regarded for their delicious white meat. They are sometimes called lemon sole in the U.S.

They can be differentiated from summer flounder because they almost always have eyes on the right side of their bodies. They also do not have teeth. Summer flounder have their eyes on the left side of their bodies, and do have teeth.

Dimensions Up to 23" (58 cm).

Habitat Ocean or bay shallows.

Range New England, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Eastern Canada.