Winter flounder

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"Black back" redirects here. For other uses, see Blackback (disambiguation).
Winter flounder
Pseudopleuronectes americanus.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Subclass: Neopterygii
Infraclass: Teleostei
Order: Pleuronectiformes
Family: Pleuronectidae
Genus: Pseudopleuronectes
Species: P. americanus
Binomial name
Pseudopleuronectes americanus
(Walbaum, 1792)

Pleuronectes americanus

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.[1]

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.

Winter flounder are managed as three stock units in U.S. coastal waters; Southern New England, Mid-Atlantic and Gulf of Maine.


  1. ^ "Winter flounder (Pseudopleuronectes americanus)". Retrieved 2011-07-20.