How to format your references using the Ecological Applications citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Ecological Applications. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Steinberger, B. 2008. Geophysics. Reconstructing Earth history in three dimensions. Science (New York, N.Y.) 322:866–868.
A journal article with 2 authors
Romanowicz, B., and D. Giardini. 2001. Geophysics. The future of permanent seismic networks. Science (New York, N.Y.) 293:2000–2001.
A journal article with 3 authors
Holmes, E. A., M. G. Craske, and A. M. Graybiel. 2014. Psychological treatments: A call for mental-health science. Nature 511:287–289.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Aranson, I. S., A. Snezhko, J. S. Olafsen, and J. S. Urbach. 2008. Comment on “Long-lived giant number fluctuations in a swarming granular nematic.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 320:612; author reply 612.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Frikha, M. 2013. Ad Hoc Networks. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Cotta, C., S. Reich, R. Schaefer, and A. Ligęza, editors. 2008. Knowledge-Driven Computing: Knowledge Engineering and Intelligent Computations. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
Lima, F. H. B., and D. A. Cantane. 2013. Recent Advances on Nanostructured Electrocatalysts for Oxygen Electro-Reduction and Ethanol Electro-Oxidation. Pages 125–151 in F. L. de Souza and E. R. Leite, editors. Nanoenergy: Nanotechnology Applied for Energy Production. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for Ecological Applications.

Blog post
Fang, J. 2014, November 12. Remains of Two Infants Discovered in Ice Age Burial Site. IFLScience.


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. 1982. Data Processing Costs Can Be Reduced at Army and Air Force Exchange Service. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Spruill, E. L. 2008. A correlational analysis relating organizational climate to employee performance: A case study. Doctoral dissertation, University of Phoenix, Phoenix, AZ.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Vecsey, G. 2010, September 1. For U.S. Soccer And Bradley, Staying Put Is Right Move. New York Times:B11.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (Steinberger 2008).
This sentence cites two references (Romanowicz and Giardini 2001, Steinberger 2008).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Romanowicz and Giardini 2001)
  • Three or more authors: (Aranson et al. 2008)

About the journal

Full journal titleEcological Applications
AbbreviationEcol. Appl.
ISSN (print)1051-0761
ISSN (online)1939-5582

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