Overview

Comprehensive Description

Biology

Lives most often on stony bottoms. Feeds on a variety of small invertebrates, but polychaetes seem to dominate. Apparently they do not feed in wintertime (Ref. 9900). Marketed fresh and frozen; eaten steamed, fried, broiled, microwaved and baked (Ref. 9988).
  • Cooper, J.A. and F. Chapleau 1998 Monophyly and intrarelationships of the family Pleuronectidae (Pleuronectiformes), with a revised classification. Fish. Bull. 96(4):686-726. (Ref. 30193)
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Description

 Microstomus kitt is a moderately sized flatfish reaching up to 30 cm (rarely up to 45 cm) in length. It lies left-handed with its eyes on the left side of its body and is therefore not a member of the sole family. It has a deep oval body with a small head and a very small mouth. It has a lateral line with only a slight curve above the pectoral fin. The dorsal and anal fins are smoothly curved and reach as far back as the tail. The eye side is marbled brown to grey in colour often spotted or blotched with both paler and darker marks.
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Description

The lemon sole is a right-eyed flatfish which is similar in shape to the dab but has a smoother and more slimy skin and a fleshier body. The head and mouth are very small hence the name Microstomus which is latin for small mouth. The upper surface is mottled red-brown, pink and orange with flecks of yellow and green. Usually there is a large orange blotch behind the pectoral fin. The underside is white. Adult fish can reach a maximum length of 70cm however most are between 20-30cm. The lemon sole is similar in shape to the dab but has a smoother, more slimy and more colourful skin. The only other flatfish likely to be encountered on rocky surfaces are the topknots, however these are all left-eyed.
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Distribution

Western Baltic Sea, North Sea, Eastern North Atlantic.
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Northeast Atlantic: Bay of Biscay to the White Sea and off Iceland.
  • Nielsen, J.G. 1986 Pleuronectidae. p. 1299-1307. In P.J.P. Whitehead, M.-L. Bauchot, J.-C. Hureau, J. Nielsen and E. Tortonese (eds.) Fishes of the North-eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean. UNESCO, Paris. Vol. 3. (Ref. 4705)
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All around the coasts of Britain and Ireland.
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Physical Description

Size

Maximum size: 650 mm ---
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Max. size

65.0 cm TL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 9988)); max. published weight: 2,950 g (Ref. 6112); max. reported age: 23 years (Ref. 6112)
  • Frimodt, C. 1995 Multilingual illustrated guide to the world's commercial coldwater fish. Fishing News Books, Osney Mead, Oxford, England. 215 p. (Ref. 9988)
  • Rae, B.B. 1965 The lemon sole. Fishing News (Books) Ltd., London. 106 p. (Ref. 6112)
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Diagnostic Description

Small head and mouth. Body is oval. Skin is marbled and smooth. Lateral line almost straight, slight curve above the pectoral fin (Ref. 35388).
  • Muus, B.J. and J.G. Nielsen 1999 Sea fish. Scandinavian Fishing Year Book, Hedehusene, Denmark. 340 p. (Ref. 35388)
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Ecology

Habitat

Depth: 20 - 200m.
From 20 to 200 meters.

Habitat: demersal.
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Environment

demersal; oceanodromous (Ref. 51243); marine; depth range 10 - 200 m, usually 10 - 150 m (Ref. 35388)
  • Riede, K. 2004 Global register of migratory species - from global to regional scales. Final Report of the R&D-Projekt 808 05 081. Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, Bonn, Germany. 329 p. (Ref. 51243)
  • Muus, B.J. and J.G. Nielsen 1999 Sea fish. Scandinavian Fishing Year Book, Hedehusene, Denmark. 340 p. (Ref. 35388)
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Depth range based on 103596 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 72864 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): -9 - 860
  Temperature range (°C): 6.433 - 11.845
  Nitrate (umol/L): 1.402 - 17.472
  Salinity (PPS): 22.343 - 35.698
  Oxygen (ml/l): 4.425 - 7.118
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.249 - 1.053
  Silicate (umol/l): 0.987 - 10.823

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): -9 - 860

Temperature range (°C): 6.433 - 11.845

Nitrate (umol/L): 1.402 - 17.472

Salinity (PPS): 22.343 - 35.698

Oxygen (ml/l): 4.425 - 7.118

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.249 - 1.053

Silicate (umol/l): 0.987 - 10.823
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

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 The lemon sole is a demersal species usually found on stony bottoms from depths of 20 m to 200 m.
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Lemon sole are bottom-living fish that live mainly in rocky or stony areas in depths between 5-400m. They feed on small crustaceans, scale-worms and chitons.
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Migration

Oceanodromous. Migrating within oceans typically between spawning and different feeding areas, as tunas do. Migrations should be cyclical and predictable and cover more than 100 km.
  • Riede, K. 2004 Global register of migratory species - from global to regional scales. Final Report of the R&D-Projekt 808 05 081. Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, Bonn, Germany. 329 p. (Ref. 51243)
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Trophic Strategy

Generally feeds on sedentary or near sedentary prey, mainly polychaetes; feeding activity seasonal, ceasing almost completely during winter (December) and peaking around April to August (Ref. 6112).
  • Rae, B.B. 1965 The lemon sole. Fishing News (Books) Ltd., London. 106 p. (Ref. 6112)
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Life History and Behavior

Life Cycle

Spawning is mainly confined to depths of 55-91 m in the northwestern North Sea and commences at a minimum temperature of 6.5 °C in Scottish waters. Sex ratio is about 1:1, but females progressively predominate upon sexual maturity.
  • Rae, B.B. 1965 The lemon sole. Fishing News (Books) Ltd., London. 106 p. (Ref. 6112)
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Microstomus kitt

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


There are 3 barcode sequences available from BOLD and GenBank.

Below is a sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.

See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen and other sequences.

GCCCTCTATCTCGTATTGGGTGCCTGAGCCGGAATAGTGGGCACAGGCTTA---AGTCTACTCATTCGAGCAGAACTGAGCCAACCTGGGGCTCTCCTAGGAGAC---GACCAAATTTATAACGTAATCGTCACCGCACACGCCTTTGTAATAATCTTTTTTATGGTAATACCCATTATAATCGGAGGGTTTGGAAACTGACTCATCCCCTTAATA---ATTGGGGCCCCTGACATAGCTTTTCCCCGAATGAATAATATGAGTTTCTGACTCCTCCCCCCATCCTTTCTTCTCCTCTTGGCCTCTTCAGGTGTTGAAGCAGGGGCGGGTACTGGGTGGACGGTTTACCCCCCACTAGCTGGCAATCTAGCCCACGCCGGAGCATCCGTAGACCTG---ACAATCTTCTCACTACATCTTGCAGGGATCTCCTCAATCCTGGGGGCTATTAACTTTATTACTACCATTATCAACATAAAACCTACAACAGTCACAATATACCAAATCCCTTTATTTGTCTGAGCTGTTCTAATCACTGCTGTTCTTCTACTCTTATTCCTGCCCGTCTTAGCCGCT---GGGATTACAATGTTGCTAACAGACCGAAATCTGAACACAACATTCTTTGACCCTGCTGGAGGAGGTGACCCCATCCTATACCACCAT---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------TGG---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------TTT
-- end --

Download FASTA File

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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Microstomus kitt

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 3
Specimens with Barcodes: 27
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Threats

Not Evaluated
  • IUCN 2006 2006 IUCN red list of threatened species. www.iucnredlist.org. Downloaded July 2006.
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Importance

fisheries: commercial; aquarium: public aquariums
  • Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations 1992 FAO yearbook 1990. Fishery statistics. Catches and landings. FAO Fish. Ser. (38). FAO Stat. Ser. 70:(105):647 p. (Ref. 4931)
  • Rae, B.B. 1965 The lemon sole. Fishing News (Books) Ltd., London. 106 p. (Ref. 6112)
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Wikipedia

Lemon sole

The lemon sole, Microstomus kitt, is a flatfish of the family Pleuronectidae. It is native to shallow seas around Northern Europe, where it lives on stony bottoms down to depths of about 200 metres (660 ft). It grows up to 65 centimetres (26 in) in length and reaches about 3 kilograms (6.6 lb) in weight.[1][2]

It is a popular food fish.

Identification[edit]

The lemon sole is a right-eyed flatfish with a small head and mouth and smooth, slimy skin. The upper surface is reddish brown in colour, mottled with pink and orange and flecks of yellow and green, and a prominent orange patch is typically found behind the pectoral fin, around which the lateral line also curves. The underside of the fish is white. Adults can reach lengths of up to 65 centimetres (26 in), but most measure around 20–30 centimetres (8–12 in).[1][2]

Origin of the name[edit]

Lemon sole is a misnomer since the fish is neither a real sole, nor does it have the taste of lemon. It probably comes from the French name : "limande" or "sole limande". The French term "limande" may come from the French word "lime", it means "file" (tool use to smooth metal, wood, etc.), possibly referring to the texture of the fish's skin. Some other authors suggest that "limande" may also come from the French word "limon" (which means "silt").[3]

Fishing[edit]

In 2007 the European Union fishing quota, or Total Allowable Catch (TAC), for lemon sole (and witch) was 6,175 tonnes, of which 3,716 tonnes were caught, mostly by UK fishermen. The quota for 2008 was 6,793 tonnes and the quota for 2009 was 6,793 tonnes.[4][5]

The Marine Conservation Society rates lemon sole at 2 or 3 on its sustainability scale (where 1 is best and 5 is worst) depending on how and where it is caught.[6][7]

See also[edit]

Several other species of flatfish are known as lemon soles:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Microstomus kitt". Fishbase. Archived from the original on 2007-03-12. Retrieved 2009-04-27. 
  2. ^ a b Picton, B.E. & Morrow, C.C. (2005). "Microstomus kitt". Encyclopaedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland. Habitas Online. Archived from the original on 2007-12-21. Retrieved 2009-04-28. 
  3. ^ "Limande" in Trésor informatique de la langue française : http://atilf.atilf.fr/dendien/scripts/tlfiv4/showps.exe?p=combi.htm;java=no;
  4. ^ "1 Fisheries: catch quotas and effort limitation 2009". Documents considered by the Committee on 21 January 2009 - European Scrutiny Committee. Hansard. 21 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-27. 
  5. ^ Barratt & Irwin (2008). United Kingdom Sea Fishing Statistics 2007. London: Marine and Fisheries Agency. p. 49. ISBN 978-0-85521-181-3. 
  6. ^ "Lemon Sole". Fishonline. Marine Conservation Society. Retrieved 2009-04-27. 
  7. ^ "Fish To Eat: Lemon Sole". Fishonline. Marine Conservation Society. Retrieved 2009-04-27. 


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