Righteye flounders are a family, Pleuronectidae, of flounders. They are called "righteye flounders" because most species lie on the sea bottom on their left side, with both eyes on the right side. The Paralichthyidae are the opposite, with their eyes on the left side.
Their dorsal and anal fins are long and continuous, with the dorsal fin extending forward onto the head. Females lay eggs that float in mid-water until the larvae develop, and they sink to the bottom.
They are found on the bottoms of oceans around the world, with some species, such as the Atlantic halibut, Hippoglossus hippoglossus, being found down to 2,000 metres (6,600 ft). The smaller species eat sea-floor invertebrates such as polychaetes and crustaceans, but the larger righteye flounders, such as H. hippoglossus, which grows up to 4.7 metres (15 ft) in length, feed on other fishes and cephalopods as well.
They include many important commercially fished species, including not only the various fish called flounders, but also the European plaice, the halibuts, the lemon sole, the common dab, the Pacific Dover sole, and the flukes.
The name of the family is derived from the Greek πλευρά (pleura), meaning "rib" or "side", and νηκτόν (nekton), meaning "swimming".
- Froese, Rainer, and Daniel Pauly, eds. (2012). "Pleuronectidae" in FishBase. October 2012 version.
- Chapleau, Francois & Amaoka, Kunio (1998). Paxton, J.R. & Eschmeyer, W.N.. ed. Encyclopedia of Fishes. San Diego: Academic Press. p. 224. ISBN 0-12-547665-5.
- "Hippoglossus hippoglossus". Fishbase. 5 June 2009. http://www.fishbase.org/Summary/SpeciesSummary.php?id=1371. Retrieved 2009-06-22.
- J. A. Cooper and F. Chapleau (1998). "Monophyly and intrarelationships of the family Pleuronectidae (Pleuronectiformes), with a revised classification". Fish. Bull. 96 (4): 686–726.
- "Pleuronectidae". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. http://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=172859. Retrieved 2 April 2006.