We went to Englewood Beach tonight for a walk along the Gulf and to be able to say we had at least put our feet in the ocean. While walking, we came across a couple fishing. The man said his wife had caught a flounder. A flounder, which she eagerly showed us. Not flat in a normal orientation, but flat, in this case, left side up. Prior to this, my only contact with a flounder was while snorkeling in the U.S. Virgin Islands. In that case, it was a peacock flounder.
Flounders begin life as very small, somewhat normal symmetric little fish. Then they change. Why, no scientists really know. It changes from a rather normal little fish into an anatomical disaster.
This flounder was a lefty. I guess it was left finned. Except for the eye, they appear to be ready to go in a frying pan. Not the eye that should be on the left. The right-side eye has moved over to the left side to join its cohort. If a fish had a ‘this side up’ it would be the side with both eyes, I reckon. Most flounders are left-handers. There are right-handers, but they are rare.
I can’t imagine the evolutionary advantage that a one-sided fish could have. When I looked at the poor thing, it reminded me of a spatchcocked chicken. On either, all that is missing are the tire tracks of the offending vehicle.