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
Kerr, R. A. 2000. OIL OUTLOOK:USGS Optimistic on World Oil Prospects. Science (New York, N.Y.) 289:237.
A journal article with 2 authors
Weber, W. J., and R. C. Ewing. 2000. Plutonium immobilization and radiation effects. Science (New York, N.Y.) 289:2051–2052.
A journal article with 3 authors
Cappellini, E., M. J. Collins, and M. T. P. Gilbert. 2014. Biochemistry. Unlocking ancient protein palimpsests. Science (New York, N.Y.) 343:1320–1322.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Huang, Z.-T., Y.-F. Li, P.-K. Jiang, S. X. Chang, Z.-L. Song, J. Liu, and G.-M. Zhou. 2014. Long-term intensive management increased carbon occluded in phytolith (PhytOC) in bamboo forest soils. Scientific reports 4:3602.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Fitzgerald, R. W., and B. J. Meacham. 2017. Fire Performance Analysis for Buildings. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK.
An edited book
Kihara, K., editor. 2015. Gasless Single-Port RoboSurgeon Surgery in Urology. 1st ed. 2015. Springer Japan, Tokyo.
A chapter in an edited book
Mednicoff, D. 2016. Change, Challenge, and Continuity in Qatari Development: Identity and Citizenship in the Fulcrum of Hyper-Globalization. Pages 111–136 in N. Stokes-DuPass and R. Fruja, editors. Citizenship, Belonging, and Nation-States in the Twenty-First Century. Palgrave Macmillan US, New York, NY.

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
Hale, T. 2016, May 15. The Alternative Medicine Blogger Who Faked Cancer Is Facing Legal Action. 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. 1988. Private Enterprise, Public Responsibilities. 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
Pratt, P. R. 2009. Analysis of the thermo-mechanical characteristics of the LENSTM process for steels using the finite element method. Doctoral dissertation, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS.

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
Bernstein, N. 2016, May 27. Bodies Given to N.Y.U. Sent to Mass Graves. New York Times:A1.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Kerr 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Kerr 2000, Weber and Ewing 2000).

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

  • Two authors: (Weber and Ewing 2000)
  • Three or more authors: (Huang et al. 2014)

About the journal

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

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