Pelagic Division

At the Pelagic Division the focus is on research on pelagic fish species, zooplankton and marine mammals. Our projects includes research on biology and ecology of different species, long-term monitoring of the ecosystem and stock assessment in relation to advice on sustainable use of marine resources.

Zooplankton plays a critical role in the marine environment and is a prey for all fish stocks at least at the early stages of their life. Pelagic fish stocks and baleen whales prey almost entirely on zooplankton, though some species feed on other prey for part of the year. Studies on zooplankton aim to improve the biological understanding of different species as well as to determine the spatial and temporal variability in density and species composition. In addition, we work on developing methods to improve use of echosounders to quantify the larger krill species (euphausiids).

Studies on pelagic fish species are extensive in the division. The main emphasis is on estimating stock size and fishing opportunities of capelin, summer-spawning herring, Norwegian spring-spawning herring, blue whiting, mackerel, and lumpfish. The goal of sustainable use of marine resources demands also various research on biology, distribution, migrations, and ecological connectivity among these fish stocks, including the connectivity with the environment, zooplankton and marine mammals. Furthermore, there is an increasing focus on studies on mesopelagic fish (e.g., lanternfish and Mueller’s pearlside) due to possible exploitation of those species.

The focus of the marine mammal’s research is, as with fish stocks, the estimation of stock size of the various mammals found in Icelandic waters, including all whale species and the two seal species that bear their young in Iceland. Various studies on biology, ecology, migrations, and behaviour of marine mammals take also place.

The overarching objective of all research in the Pelagic Division is to give advice to government on sustainable use of marine resources, to study ecological connections of the diverse species and the effects of environmental variability there on.

Name Job Title Email
Anna Heiða Ólafsdóttir Fisheries Biologist 5752044
Anna Heiða Ólafsdóttir
Fisheries Biologist

Specialisation: Pelagic ecosystem - mackerel - blue whiting - somatic growth - fisheries acoustics




Arnþór Bragi Kristjánsson Technician 5752305
Arnþór Bragi Kristjánsson

Specialisation: Underwater cameras

Birkir Bárðarson Fisheries Biologist 5752087
Birkir Bárðarson
Fisheries Biologist

Specialisation: Capelin

Björn Sigurðarson Electronics Engineer 5752158
Björn Sigurðarson
Electronics Engineer

Specialisation: Electronics engineering

Charlotte Sarah Matthews Líffræðingur
Charlotte Sarah Matthews
Eric dos Santos Biologist 5752649
Eric dos Santos

Specialisation: Seal research and general sampling and data collection about Icelandic marine mammals
Education: MSc in biology from the Universtiy of Iceland

Research Gate


Guðjón Már Sigurðsson Fisheries Biologist 5752113
Guðjón Már Sigurðsson
Fisheries Biologist

Specialisation: flatfish - bycatch - discard estimation - stock assessment

Research Gate Profile

Guðmundur Óskarsson Head of Division 5752121
Guðmundur Óskarsson
Head of Division

Specialisation: herring - pelagic biota

Hildur Pétursdóttir Marine Ecologist 5752059
Hildur Pétursdóttir
Marine Ecologist

Specialisation: zooplankton

Höskuldur Björnsson Engineer 5752106

Specialisation: stock assessment (saithe, catfish)

James Kennedy Fisheries Biologist 4522977
James Kennedy
Fisheries Biologist

Specialisation:: lumpfish - lumpsucker 


Google Scholar profile

Orcid profile

Kristinn Guðnason Engineer 5752105

Starfssvið: Líkanagerð

Sandra Magdalena Granquist Animal Behaviour Scientist and Ecologist 8472188
Sandra Magdalena Granquist
Animal Behaviour Scientist and Ecologist

Specialisation: seals


Research Gate

Sigurður Þór Jónsson Fisheries Biologist 5752093
Sigurður Þór Jónsson
Fisheries Biologist

Specialisation:: capelin

Sigurvin Bjarnason Biologist 5752000

Specialisation: Capelin- Biology and acoustics

Education: MSc in Marine biology from the University of Iceland 2016


Research Gate

Sólrún Sigurgeirsdóttir Biologist 5752055
Sólrún Sigurgeirsdóttir

Specialisation: zooplankton

Sverrir Daníel Halldórsson Biologist 5752079
Sverrir Daníel Halldórsson

Specialisation: whales


Teresa Sofia Giesta da Silva Researcher 5752078
Teresa Sofia Giesta da Silva

Specialisation: zooplankton

Thassya Christina dos Santos Schmidt Fiskifræðingur 575 2073
Thassya Christina dos Santos Schmidt

Starfssvið: Sjávarvistfræði, æxlunarlíffræði, nýliðun, lífssaga uppsjávarfiska, stofnstærðabreytingar

PhD in Marine Science from University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway, 2017.
MSc. in Biological Oceanography from University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil, 2011.
BSc. In Biology from University of Taubaté, São Paulo, Brazil, 2004.


Valerie Chosson Biologist 5752119

Specialisation:: genetics - whales - whale photo ID


Warsha Singh Ecologist 5752004

Starfssvið: Vistfræði


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