How to format your references using the Marine Ecology Progress Series citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Marine Ecology Progress Series. 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
Burrows A (2000) Supernova explosions in the Universe. Nature 403:727–733.
A journal article with 2 authors
Cheung GYC, Otto M (2015) Microbiology: Diverted on the way to memory. Nature 517:28–29.
A journal article with 3 authors
Pauluis O, Czaja A, Korty R (2008) The global atmospheric circulation on moist isentropes. Science 321:1075–1078.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Sil S, Kuhar N, Acharya S, Umapathy S (2013) Is chemically synthesized graphene ‘really’ a unique substrate for SERS and fluorescence quenching? Sci Rep 3:3336.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Castle D, Cline C, Daar AS, Tsamis C, Singer PA (2006) Science, Society, and the Supermarket. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Humphrys G, Williams M (eds) (2005) Presenting and Representing Environments. Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht.
A chapter in an edited book
Asai K, Kondo T, Mizuki A, Billinghurst M (2010) Lunar Surface Collaborative Browsing System for Science Museum Exhibitions. In: Transactions on Edutainment IV. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Pan Z, Cheok AD, Müller W, Zhang X, Wong K (eds) Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, p 34–43

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 Marine Ecology Progress Series.

Blog post
Luntz S (2015) Venus May Have Had Oceans Of Carbon Dioxide. (accessed 30 October 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 (2012) Payment to Counties: More Clarity Could Help Ensure County Expenditures Are Consistent with Key Parts of the Secure Rural Schools Act. 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
Dhah S (2015) The relationship between job-embedded professional development and special education teacher self-efficacy in hard-to-staff middle schools. Doctoral dissertation, Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA

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
Greenhouse L (2007) Court Weighs Rights of Passengers When Police Stop Cars. New York Times:A20.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Burrows 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Burrows 2000, Cheung & Otto 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (Cheung & Otto 2015)
  • Three authors: (Pauluis et al. 2008)
  • 99 or more authors: (Sil et al. 2013)

About the journal

Full journal titleMarine Ecology Progress Series
AbbreviationMar. Ecol. Prog. Ser.
ISSN (print)0171-8630
ISSN (online)1616-1599
ScopeAquatic Science
Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Other styles