How to format your references using the Ecosystems citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Ecosystems. 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
Bagla P. 2000. INDIA: Disease Data Stolen in Lab Break-In. Science 290:1668b–9b.
A journal article with 2 authors
Hoorn C, Flantua S. 2015. Geology. An early start for the Panama land bridge. Science 348:186–7.
A journal article with 3 authors
Sun Q, Haynes KF, Zhou X. 2013. Differential undertaking response of a lower termite to congeneric and conspecific corpses. Sci Rep 3:1650.
A journal article with 99 or more authors
Bormashenko E, Pogreb R, Balter S, Aurbach D. 2013. Electrically controlled membranes exploiting Cassie-Wenzel wetting transitions. Sci Rep 3:3028.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Storey IC, Allan A. 2008. A Guide to Ancient Greek Drama. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing Ltd
An edited book
He R. 2014. Robust Recognition via Information Theoretic Learning. (Hu B, Yuan X, Wang L, editors.). Cham: Springer International Publishing
A chapter in an edited book
Norton BG. 2013. Facts, Values, and Analogies: A Darwinian Approach to Environmental Choice. In: Bergandi D, editor. The Structural Links between Ecology, Evolution and Ethics: The Virtuous Epistemic Circle. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands. pp 63–82.

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 Ecosystems.

Blog post
Andrew D. 2016. Bioethicist: The Climate Crisis Calls For Fewer Children. IFLScience. Last accessed 30/10/2018


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. 2000. Space Station: Russian-Built and Service Module Compliance With Safety Requirements. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Gu J. 2010. Measurement, modeling, and synthesis of time-varying appearance of natural phenomena.

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
Hodgman J. 2017. Bonus Advice From Judge John Hodgman. New York Times:MM20.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Bagla 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Bagla 2000, 2000).

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

  • Two authors: (Hoorn and Flantua 2015)
  • Three or more authors: (Bormashenko and others 2013)

About the journal

Full journal titleEcosystems
ISSN (print)1432-9840
ISSN (online)1435-0629
ScopeEcology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Environmental Chemistry

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