Winter Flounder

Pleuronectes americanas

Image by ‘St’ on, CC BY 3.0

Physical: Winter Flounder can grow to approximately 2 feet. The Winter Flounder’s appearance closely matches the Summer Flounder, however it is right-sided, meaning the eyes and mouth lay on the right side of the body. Color can vary from reddish-brown to olive-green or even black.

Habitat: This species of flounder can range from Labrador to Georgia. They can rarely be found south of the Chesapeake and are most abundant in the Gulf of Maine. They are bottom dwellers which prefer an environment of mud or sand.

Feeding: Adult flounder feed on small plant matter and benthic invertebrates such as crustaceans, cnidarians, and mollusks. They bury themselves in the sand to hide from prey.

Breeding: Spawning occurs from December through June primarily in upper estuaries. The female will lay between 500,000 to 1,500,000 eggs. The eggs are laid on sandy substrates and incubate for 15 to 25 days.

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