Lefteye Flounders – One of Nature’s Most Epic Metamorphoses

Today’s larval blog focuses on “flatfishes” belonging to the Family Bothidae (pronounced both-ee-day) (~140 spp.), which are found worldwide in temperate and tropical seas. More than ten species have been recorded in the Caribbean, with eight species present in Trinidad and Tobago waters. These fishes are commonly called “lefteye flounders” because the adults lie onContinue reading “Lefteye Flounders – One of Nature’s Most Epic Metamorphoses”

The Little-Known Lives of Fish Larvae

Did you know that the young of many fishes might look completely different to the adults? During reproduction, most fish produce eggs which hatch into microscopic larvae. Some are as small as a pencil point (2 mm). These larvae often spend much of their lives floating in the water column and are thus capable of dispersing very far distances, in some cases, from Trinidad and Tobago to the Gulf of Mexico! As they develop, they learn to swim, hunt and avoid predators.  In many cases, these larvae do not resemble their adults as they often have strange temporary adaptations that allow them to survive in the open ocean. Because many fish larvae are not easily seen by the naked eye, they are often overlooked and are poorly known. In this series of blogs, we highlight the interesting larval forms of some of the fish species present in Caribbean waters.