Krill stock composition and distributional patterns in the vicinity of Elephant Island during austral summer 1988-1992 are described. Changes in both size and maturity composition over the five year period indicates strong recruitment from the 1987/88 and 1990/91 year classes and poor recruitment from the 1989/90 and 1990/91 year classes. Year class success may be related to the abundance of large mature stages and/or the development state of mature females during early summer. The overall distributional patterns during each year indicate that the older age classes were associated with oceanic/Drake Passage waters while younger classes were associated with water masses to the south. Between-year differences in distribution patterns reflected changes in year class success and maturity stage composition.