How to format your references using the Journal of Ecology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Journal of Ecology. 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
Ihde, D. (2000). Epistemology engines. Nature, 406(6791), 21.
A journal article with 2 authors
Grimmer, M. R., & Costello, J. F. (2016). Cancer: Oncogene brought into the loop. Nature, 529(7584), 34–35.
A journal article with 3 authors
Yan, W., Smith, C., & Cheng, L. (2013). Expanded activity of dimer nucleases by combining ZFN and TALEN for genome editing. Scientific Reports, 3, 2376.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Farroni, T., Chiarelli, A. M., Lloyd-Fox, S., Massaccesi, S., Merla, A., Di Gangi, V., … Johnson, M. H. (2013). Infant cortex responds to other humans from shortly after birth. Scientific Reports, 3, 2851.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Misstear, B., Banks, D., & Clark, L. (2017). Water Wells and Boreholes. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Qing, A., & Lee, C. K. (Eds.). (2010). Differential Evolution in Electromagnetics. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Lun, D. S., Ho, T., Ratnakar, N., Médard, M., & Koetter, R. (2006). Network Coding in Wireless Networks. In F. H. P. Fitzek & M. D. Katz (Eds.), Cooperation in Wireless Networks: Principles and Applications: Real Egoistic Behavior is to Cooperate! (pp. 127–161). Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.

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 Journal of Ecology.

Blog post
Luntz, S. (2015, May 28). Ozone Depletion Could Have Been Much Worse. Retrieved October 30, 2018, from IFLScience website:


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. (2006). Freight Railroads: Preliminary Observations on Rates, Competition, and Capacity Issues (No. GAO-06-898T). 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
Oh, Y. (2006). Prediction of Steady State Response in Dynamic Mode Atomic Force Microscopy and Its Applications in Nano-metrology (Doctoral dissertation). Ohio State University, Columbus, OH.

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
St. John Kelly, E. (1993, November 28). PLAYING IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD. New York Times, p. 1318.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Ihde, 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Grimmer & Costello, 2016; Ihde, 2000).

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

  • Two authors: (Grimmer & Costello, 2016)
  • Three authors: (Yan, Smith, & Cheng, 2013)
  • 6 or more authors: (Farroni et al., 2013)

About the journal

Full journal titleJournal of Ecology
AbbreviationJ. Ecol.
ISSN (print)0022-0477
ISSN (online)1365-2745
ScopeEcology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Plant Science

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