Marginal and edge state analysis was carried out on sagitta otoliths and illicia of white anglerfish taken from ICES Sub-area VI and Division IVa between April 1999 and September 2000. This demonstrated that an annulus comprised a multi-ring opaque zone and a wide translucent zone. Narrow translucent zones within the wide opaque zones were found to be significantly narrower than the translucent zones separating them, suggesting that these were false rings. Opaque material was predominantly deposited during the summer months (July-September) and translucent material during the winter (December-February). Precision of increment readings was tested from repeated increment counts of the calcified structures. This indicated that the most consistent age readings came from sagitta otoliths sectioned through the sagittal plane. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science B.V All rights reserved.