The successful application of techniques to enhance detection of age marks in biological specimens is of vital importance in fisheries research. This manual documents age determination techniques used by staff at the Woods Hold Laboratory, National Marine Fisheries Service. General information on procedures for preparing anatomical structures is described, together with criteria used to interpret growth patterns and assign ages. Annotated photographs of age structures are provided to illustrate criteria. Detailed procedures are given for the following species: Atlantic herring (Clupea harengus), haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus), Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua), pollock (Pollachius virens), silver hake (Merluccius billinearis), red hake (Urophycis chuss), black sea bass (Centropristis striata), weakfish (Cynoscion regalis), Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus), butterfish (Peprilus triacanthus), redfish (Sebastes fasciatus), summer flounder (Paralichthys dentatus), winter flounder (Pseudopleuronectes americanus), witch flounder (Glyptocephalus cynoglossus), American plaice (Hippoglossoides platessoides), yellowtail flounder (Limanda ferruginea), surf clam (Spisula solidissima), and ocean quahog (Artica islandica).