Narragansett Bay is changing forever. Here’s why one fish is never coming back.

What happened to a fish that was once all but synonymous with Narragansett Bay?

Winter flounder used to be considered the “poor man’s fish” as it was a highly populated fish in Narragansett Bay that nearly everyone could catch. However, as the years passed, the population has declined to 1% of what it once was. The reason behind its steep decrease? It could be a mixture of overfishing, warming of the oceans, and local environmental harm. As researchers and students at URI’s Graduate School of Oceanography try to pin down the culprit for the deteriorating populations of multiple once plentiful Narragansett Bay species, Joe Langan, a Ph.D candidate at URI’s GSO says winter flounder is the victim in a murder mystery. “It’s like a game of Clue,” he says. “We not only have to figure out the who but also the where.” Learn more about this mystery in this Providence Journal series.