rockfish otolith

Age Determination Unit
About Us

The Age Determination Unit (ADU) at the Alaska Department of Fish and Game's Mark, Tag, and Age Laboratory in Juneau, Alaska, serves fishery managers and researchers statewide by producing age data for fish and invertebrate species. Age structures are sampled during commercial, population survey, and research harvest. These age structures are shipped to the ADU, where they are prepared and growth patterns analyzed. Quality of the age data is assessed1 before data are released back to the managers. 1Go to Analysis page.

Biologists at the ADU work with other scientists in different age determination sites in British Columbia, Washington, Oregon and California to standardize and improve on age determination methods. Periodically new information is received which either confirms existing interpretations of age or refines current methods. Interpretation of growth patterns, development of new techniques, or other pertinent age and growth pattern work are documented and reported through a variety of media; reports2, posters, inhouse technical note series, etc.
2 Go to Reports page.

Age data describe growth characters of each species or population of animals. This allows fishery managers to assess the ability of a species or a population to sustain harvest and set harvest goals.

We provide age-reading services with priority to Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Commercial Fisheries Groundfish and Invertebrate projects. We also provide contract services to other agencies and educational institutions.
Please contact the Program Manager if you are interested our fish and invertebrate age reading services.