Over the past year, the Stock Identification Methods Working Group (SIMWG) made progress toward addressing our multi-year terms of reference and has contributed to ICES Science Plan priorities. The working group was chaired by Lisa Kerr (USA) dur-ing this period and SIMWG held an in-person meeting in Portland, Maine, USA, 7–8 August 2018 with some members working by correspondence in 2018.
SIMWG has continued to provide annual updates on recent applications of stock identifi-cation methods to ICES species and on advances in stock identification methods. SIMWG’s annual reviews on advances in stock identification methods keep ICES mem-bers abreast of best practices in this field of study.
SIMWG continues to work on resolving issues of stock identification as requested by ICES working groups. Over the past year, we have received three requests to address questions on issues of stock structure: 1) stock identity of European sardine (Sardina pil-chardus) from participants in the Workshop on Atlantic Sardine (WKSAR); 2) beaked redfish (Sebastes mentella) stock affiliation on the East Greenland slope from the North Western Working Group (NWWG); and 3) proposed stock identification of the cod in ICES area 6a.
SIMWG also continues to work on reviewing and reporting on advances in mixed stock analysis. This work is relevant to resolving mixed stock composition issues in assessment and management and will continue over the next year of our three year cycle.