MOREHEAD CITY, NC (WITN) - Research is underway at one university in the East to better understand the behavior of one species of fish that is not only important to the coastal marine ecosystem but also fisheries.
Ph.D. students at the UNC Institute of Marine Sciences are currently studying the behavior of juvenile flounder, who migrate to estuaries along our coast each year where they feed and develop into adults before going back offshore
Experts say, there is not much known about the behavior of flounder or how they navigate the ocean's floor to make it back to the coastal waters.
Right now research is trying to determine if they use a magnetic compass as several other species do. They are monitoring the behavior of the fish when magnetic fields are manipulated.
Ph.D. students Lewis Naisbet-Jones said, "A better understanding of the basic biology of is important when it comes to successfully implementing management and conservation decisions and thus insuring the sustainability of the flounder stocks."
The research will continue throughout the summer. They hope to have enough information by then to shed light on migrating patterns and how flounder are navigating the ocean floor.