In its life cycle, an adult flounder
has two eyes situated
one side of its head, where at hatching one eye is located on each
side of its brain. One eye migrates to the other side of the body as
a process of metamorphosis as it grows from larval to juvenile
stage. As an adult, a flounder changes its habits and camouflages
itself by lying on the bottom of the ocean floor as protection
against predators. As a result the eyes move to the side facing
upwards. The side which the eyes migrate to is dependent on the
Flounder ambush their prey, feeding at soft muddy areas of the sea
bottom, near bridge piles, docks and coral reefs and have been also
found at the bottom of the Mariana trench, the deepest known
location on the Earth's crust. Swiss scientist Jacques Piccard and
US Navy Lt. Don Walsh reached a depth of 10,916 m (35,813 ft) and
were surprised to discover sole or flounder about 30 cm long.
Their diet consists mainly of fish spawn, crustaceans, polychaetes
and small fish.
Flounder grow to a length of typically 12.5 cm to 37.5 cm (5 to 15
in) and can sometimes grow to as large as 45 cm (18 in). Their width
is about half of their length.
World stocks of large predatory fish and large ground fish such as
sole and flounder were estimated in 2003 to be only about 10% of
pre-industrial levels, largely due to over fishing. Most over
fishing is due to the extensive activities of the fishing
industry. Current estimates suggest that approximately 30
million flounder (excluding sole) are alive in the world today.
Current research indicate that the flounder population could be as
low as 15 million due to heavy over fishing and industrial pollution
along the Gulf of Mexico surrounding the coast of Texas.
According to Seafood Watch, Atlantic flounder and sole are currently
on the list of seafood that sustainability-minded consumers should
Information courtesy of
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