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Solea solea  (Linnaeus, 1758)

Common sole
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Solea solea   AquaMaps   Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Image of Solea solea (Common sole)
Solea solea
Picture by Canosa, C. & B.F. Souto

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Pleuronectiformes (Flatfishes) > Soleidae (Soles)
Etymology: Solea: Latin, solea = sandal (shoe); refered to the flat shape of the fish (Ref. 45335).

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Marine; brackish; demersal; oceanodromous (Ref. 51243); depth range 0 - 150 m (Ref. 35388), usually 10 - 60 m (Ref. 6302).   Subtropical; 8°C - 24°C (Ref. 4944); 67°N - 17°N, 17°W - 37°E (Ref. 54889)

Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm 30.3  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 70.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 4710); common length : 35.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 5504); max. published weight: 3.0 kg (Ref. 5504); max. reported age: 26 years (Ref. 32766)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 0; Dorsal soft rays (total): 73-86; Anal spines: 0; Anal soft rays: 61 - 74. Body oval, head rounded. Upper eye less than its own diameter from dorsal profile of head. Anterior nostril on blind side not enlarged. Dorsal fin beginning on upper profile of head. Eye side grayish-brown to reddish brown, with large and diffuse dark spots. Pectoral fin on eye side with a blackish blotch at posterior end of fin. Hind part of caudal fin generally darker than rest.

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Eastern Atlantic: southward from Trondheim Fjord (including North Sea and western Baltic) and Mediterranean Sea (including Sea of Marmara, Bosporus and southwestern Black Sea). Elsewhere, southward to Senegal, including Cape Verde (Ref. 5304).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Adults occur at a temperature range of 8.0-24.0°C (Ref. 4944). Usually solitary. They burrow into sandy and muddy bottoms. Retreat to deeper water during winter (Ref. 9988). Juveniles are found during the first 2 to 3 years in coastal nurseries (bays and nurseries) before migrating to deeper waters (Ref. 92286). Adults feed on worms, mollusks and small crustaceans at night. Waden sea is the most important nursery area. Batch spawner (Ref. 51846). Recruitment is very variable. Frequently found pelagically during spawning migrations (Ref. 35388). Marketed fresh and frozen; utilized steamed, fried, broiled, microwaved and baked (Ref. 9988). The Hastings Fleet Dover Sole fishery of this species has been certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (http://www.msc.org/) as well-managed and sustainable (http://www.msc.org/html/content_1216.htm).

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator | Collaborators

Desoutter, M., 1992. Soleidae. p. 860-865. In C. Levêque, D. Paugy, and G.G. Teugels (eds.) Faune des poissons d'eaux douces et saumâtres d'Afrique de l'Ouest Tome 2. Faune Tropicale n° 28. Musée Royal de l'Afrique Centrale, Tervuren, Belgique and O.R.S.T.O.M., Paris, France, 902.

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 90363)

CITES (Ref. 94142)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless




Human uses

Fisheries: highly commercial; aquaculture: commercial; gamefish: yes; aquarium: public aquariums
FAO(Aquaculture: production; fisheries: production, species profile; publication : search) | FIRMS (Stock assessments) | FisheriesWiki | Sea Around Us

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Estimates of some properties based on empirical models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5020   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00741 (0.00597 - 0.00920), b=3.06 (2.99 - 3.13), based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  3.1   ±0.3 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (K=0.21-0.33; tm=3-5; tmax=26; Fec=100,000).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Low to moderate vulnerability (29 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Very high.