Arrowtooth Flounder Research in Alaska

Ongoing research of the Arrowtooth flounder (Atheresthes stomias).

Arrowtooth Flounder
Arrowtooth flounder dorsal view

Arrowtooth flounder dorsal view.

Arrowtooth flounder is a relatively large flatfish and one of the most abundant fish in the Gulf of Alaska. It plays an important role in Alaska’s complex marine food chain. It feeds extensively on the commercially important walleye pollock. In turn, they are food for Alaska Steller sea lions, making up almost 35% of their diet.

Though the population can be found as far south as central California, it is known to spawn in Alaskan waters and the eastern Bering Sea from December through February.

A small commercial fishery operates off Kodiak Alaska targeting this fish. 

We have been involved in a variety of research to learn more about its reproduction and early stages of development. We also have examined environmental influences, such as temperature on the growth and distribution of eggs and larval fish.  


  • GUYON, J. R., HV. T. NGUYEN, C.M. GUTHRIE III, J. BONNEY, K. McGAULEY, K. HANSEN, and J. GAUVIN. 2015. Genetic stock composition analysis of Chinook salmon bycatch samples from the rockfish and arrowtooth flounder 2013 Gulf of Alaska trawl fisheries and the Gulf of Alaska salmon excluder device test. U.S. Dep. Commer., NOAA Tech. Memo. NMFS-AFSC-289.
  • De FOREST, L., J. T. DUFFY-ANDERSON, R. A. HEINTZ, A. C. MATARESE, E. C. SIDDON, T. I. SMART, and I. B. SPIES. 2014. Taxonomy of the early life stages of arrowtooth flounder (Atheresthes stomias) and Kamchatka flounder (A. evermanni) in the eastern Bering Sea, with notes on distribution and condition. Deep-Sea Res. II 109:181-189.
  • MARSH, J. M., N. HILLGRUBER, and R. J. FOY. 2012. Temporal and ontogenetic variability in trophic role of four groundfish species -- walleye pollock, Pacific cod, arrowtooth flounder, and Pacific halibut -- around Kodiak Island in the Gulf of Alaska. Trans. Am. Fish. Soc. 141:468-486.
  • STARK, J. W. 2012. Female maturity, reproductive potential, relative distribution, and growth compared between arrowtooth flounder (Atheresthes stomias) and Kamchatka flounder (A. evermanni) indicating concerns for management. J. Appl. Ichthyol. 28: 226–230.
  • Can Temperature-dependent Egg Development Affect Connectivity Between Spawning Areas and Nursery Grounds for Arrowtooth Flounder (Atheresthes stomias) in the Gulf of Alaska? By: WILLIAM STOCKHAUSEN, DEBORAH BLOOD, KENNETH COYLE. Conference:  Alaska Marine Science Symposium, Anchorage, AK, Jan 2015.
  • Energy Allocation of Young of the Year Arrowtooth Flounder in the Gulf of Alaska - a Different Strategy? By: CASEY DEBENHAM. Conference:  International Flatfish Symposium (9th), Cle Elum, WA, Nov 2014.

Additional Resources


  • Ingrid Spies, Status of Stocks and Multispecies Assessments