Abstract The fluorimetric properties of the oxime, thiosemicarbazone, azine and 2-pyridylhydrazone of 3-hydroxypyridine-2-aldehyde have been studied; quantum yields have been measured in ethanol-water and ethanol-dimethylformamide media. Two kinetic methods are described for the determination of trace amounts of manganese(II), based on its catalytic effect on the oxidation of the thiosemicarbazone and of the azine by hydrogen peroxide. The reactions are followed by measuring the rate of change of the fluorescence. The calibration graph is linear over the manganese range 5–50 ng ml with a precision of ± 3.0% for the thiosemicarbazone, and 0.4–0.9 μg ml with a precision of ±2.0% for the azine. Interferences by foreign ions have been investigated.