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Southern Flounder

Paralichthys lethostigma

Appearance

southern flounder
  • Bottom oriented flatfish with both eyes on the left side
  • Several ocellated or eyelike spots on the body, at least five of which are arranged in an "X" pattern
  • Strong canine-like teeth
  • Wedge-shaped tail, its tip in the middle

Similar Species: Gulf flounder, P. albigutta (has only three prominent eyelike spots); summer flounder, P. dentatus (have 5 or more ocellated or eyelike spots on the body)

Size: Common to 20 inches 

Habitat

Brackish bays and estuaries, sometimes ranging into tidal creeks and freshwater.

Behavior

Right eye migrates over to left side early in life.

A bottom-dweller thought to spawn offshore.

Mostly feeds on small fishes.

Ability to camouflage by changing colors to match their surrounding habitat and avoid predators.

Additional Information

Recreational Regulations

 

Image Credit: © Diane Rome Peebles