Petrale sole
The Petrale sole, Eopsetta jordani, is an edible flatfish
The flatfish are an order of ray-finned fish, also called the Heterosomata, sometimes classified as a suborder of Perciformes. In many species, both eyes lie on one side of the head, one or the other migrating through and around the head during development...

 of the family Pleuronectidae
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...

. It is a demersal fish that lives on sandy bottoms, usually in deep water, down to depths of about 550 metres (1,804.5 ft). Males can grow to 53 centimetres (20.9 in) in length, females to 70 centimetres (27.6 in), and they can weigh up to 3.7 kilograms (8.2 lb). Its native habitat
* Habitat , a place where a species lives and grows*Human habitat, a place where humans live, work or play** Space habitat, a space station intended as a permanent settlement...

 is the Eastern Pacific
Pacific Ocean
The Pacific Ocean is the largest of the Earth's oceanic divisions. It extends from the Arctic in the north to the Southern Ocean in the south, bounded by Asia and Australia in the west, and the Americas in the east.At 165.2 million square kilometres in area, this largest division of the World...

, stretching from the coast of Baja California
Baja California
Baja California officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Baja California is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is both the northernmost and westernmost state of Mexico. Before becoming a state in 1953, the area was known as the North...

 in the south to the Aleutian Islands in the Bering Sea
Bering Sea
The Bering Sea is a marginal sea of the Pacific Ocean. It comprises a deep water basin, which then rises through a narrow slope into the shallower water above the continental shelves....

 in the north.

Petrale sole is an important commercial fish, caught all along the West Coast of the United States
West Coast of the United States
West Coast or Pacific Coast are terms for the westernmost coastal states of the United States. The term most often refers to the states of California, Oregon, and Washington. Although not part of the contiguous United States, Alaska and Hawaii do border the Pacific Ocean but can't be included in...

 and Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

 and into the Bering Sea
Bering Sea
The Bering Sea is a marginal sea of the Pacific Ocean. It comprises a deep water basin, which then rises through a narrow slope into the shallower water above the continental shelves....

, almost exclusively by trawler.


Petrale sole is a right-eyed flounder
The flounder is an ocean-dwelling flatfish species that is found in coastal lagoons and estuaries of the Northern Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.-Taxonomy:There are a number of geographical and taxonomical species to which flounder belong.*Western Atlantic...

 with an oval body. Its upper surface is uniformly light to dark brown, and its lower surface is white, sometimes with pink traces. It has a large mouth with two rows of small, arrow-shaped teeth on the upper jaw and one row of teeth on the lower jaw.


Juvenile petrale sole feed on cumaceans, carideans and amphipods, whilst adults will eat shrimp
Shrimp are swimming, decapod crustaceans classified in the infraorder Caridea, found widely around the world in both fresh and salt water. Adult shrimp are filter feeding benthic animals living close to the bottom. They can live in schools and can swim rapidly backwards. Shrimp are an important...

s, crab
True crabs are decapod crustaceans of the infraorder Brachyura, which typically have a very short projecting "tail" , or where the reduced abdomen is entirely hidden under the thorax...

s, epibenthos
Benthos is the community of organisms which live on, in, or near the seabed, also known as the benthic zone. This community lives in or near marine sedimentary environments, from tidal pools along the foreshore, out to the continental shelf, and then down to the abyssal depths.Many organisms...

 organisms and other fish, such as herring
Herring is an oily fish of the genus Clupea, found in the shallow, temperate waters of the North Pacific and the North Atlantic oceans, including the Baltic Sea. Three species of Clupea are recognized. The main taxa, the Atlantic herring and the Pacific herring may each be divided into subspecies...

, hake
The term hake refers to fish in either of:* family Phycidae of the northern oceans* family Merlucciidae of the southern oceans-Hake fish:...

, anchovy
Anchovies are a family of small, common salt-water forage fish. There are 144 species in 17 genera, found in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans. Anchovies are usually classified as an oily fish.-Description:...

, pollock
Pollock is the common name used for either of the two species of marine fish in the Pollachius genus. Both P. pollachius and P. virens are commonly referred to as pollock. Other names for P...

 and other flatfish.

Commercial Fishing

The Petrale sole is an important commercial fish, and has been fished off Oregon
Oregon is a state in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. It is located on the Pacific coast, with Washington to the north, California to the south, Nevada on the southeast and Idaho to the east. The Columbia and Snake rivers delineate much of Oregon's northern and eastern...

 since at least 1884. One fishery exists, off the west coast of the United States; although petral sole are native to Alaska
Alaska is the largest state in the United States by area. It is situated in the northwest extremity of the North American continent, with Canada to the east, the Arctic Ocean to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the west and south, with Russia further west across the Bering Strait...

 and are caught there and in other fisheries, no other designated petrale sole fishery exists.

Between 1995 and 2004 the coastwide catch of petrale sole ranged from 1,616 to 2,377 tonnes. The Pacific Fishery Management Council has established Acceptable Biological Catch limits for the annual harvests of petrale sole in the waters off the US west coast; from 1995 to 2000 the coastwide total annual catch did not exceed the catch limit, but from 2001 the catch in the Northern assessment area has exceeded the portion of the catch limit attributed to that area.

The estimated biomass of petrale sole in the northern segment of the fishery reached a historical low of 1,267 tonnes in 1992, but has increased steadily since then to 4,960 tonnes in 2005. The southern segment reached a historical low of 1,012 tonnes in 1986, and, after remaining stable for ten years, by 2005 it had increased to 4,667 tonnes. Petrale sole is currently not designated as overfished
Overfishing occurs when fishing activities reduce fish stocks below an acceptable level. This can occur in any body of water from a pond to the oceans....

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