The various flatfish found around our coastline are all very similar in shape and colour, so identifying them can sometimes prove difficult.

Here we have a brief guide to what to look out for when figuring out which species of flatfish you have just caught…

The major angling flatfish are plaice, dab, flounder, Dover sole, turbot and brill. Lemon sole have very small mouths and are rarely caught on hook and line. They are also more closely related to the dab than the Dover sole. There are a couple of other small members of the sole family and the rare megrim.

Plaice identification – large pronounced red spots, knobbly head but smooth skin

Dab identification – lighter brown colour, small flecks and spots, sometimes orange or white, distinctive curve in lateral line

Flounder identification – square-cut tail fin, muddy-brown looking, rough back and head

Dover sole identification – distinctive hooked mouth, sole-shaped

Turbot identification – Large rounded body, spotted/speckled, with scaly tubercles

Brill identification – more oval than turbot with frilly front edge to its dorsal fin near the mouth

Megrim identification – long and thin, large eyes and mouth, noticeable teeth