How to format your references using the Ecological Research citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Ecological Research. 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
Scully T (2013) Tuberculosis. Nature 502:S1
A journal article with 2 authors
Goring DR, Walker JC (2004) Plant sciences. Self-rejection--a new kinase connection. Science 303:1474–1475
A journal article with 3 authors
Sack L, Marañón T, Grubb PJ (2002) Global allocation rules for patterns of biomass partitioning. Science 296:1923
A journal article with 5 or more authors
Jékely G, Colombelli J, Hausen H, et al (2008) Mechanism of phototaxis in marine zooplankton. Nature 456:395–399

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Brown C (2012) Mastering Elliott Wave Principle. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ
An edited book
Park JJ, Yang LT, Lee C (eds) (2011) Future Information Technology: 6th International Conference, FutureTech 2011, Loutraki, Greece, June 28-30, 2011, Proceedings, Part I. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
A chapter in an edited book
Küster U, König-Ries B (2010) Measures for Benchmarking Semantic Web Service Matchmaking Correctness. In: Aroyo L, Antoniou G, Hyvönen E, et al. (eds) The Semantic Web: Research and Applications: 7th Extended Semantic Web Conference, ESWC 2010, Heraklion, Crete, Greece, May 30 – June 3, 2010, Proceedings, Part II. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, pp 45–59

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 Research.

Blog post
Luntz S (2015) Psychopaths’ Brains Respond Abnormally To Punishment. In: IFLScience. Accessed 30 Oct 2018


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 (2004) Distance Education: Improved Data on Program Costs and Guidelines on Quality Assessments Needed to Inform Federal Policy. 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
Luvani KD (2017) AIRtouch: An Intelligent Virtual Keyboard. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach

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
Fink S (2016) Even Nightmares Are Classified. 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 (Scully 2013).
This sentence cites two references (Goring and Walker 2004; Scully 2013).

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

  • Two authors: (Goring and Walker 2004)
  • Three or more authors: (Jékely et al. 2008)

About the journal

Full journal titleEcological Research
AbbreviationEcol. Res.
ISSN (print)0912-3814
ISSN (online)1440-1703
ScopeEcology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

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