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
Koen D (2003) Nuts and bolts. Nature 425:644.
A journal article with 2 authors
Ernst U & Pawelzik K (2011) Neuroscience. Sensible balance. Science 334:1507–1508.
A journal article with 3 authors
Murakami S, Nagaosa N & Zhang S-C (2003) Dissipationless quantum spin current at room temperature. Science 301:1348–1351.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Santagiustina M, Chin S, Primerov N, Ursini L & Thévenaz L (2013) All-optical signal processing using dynamic Brillouin gratings. Sci Rep 3:1594.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Dasgupta A (2012) Resolving Erroneous Reports in Toxicology and Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.: Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Završnik A ed. (2016) Drones and Unmanned Aerial Systems: Legal and Social Implications for Security and Surveillance, 1st ed. 2016. Springer International Publishing: Cham.
A chapter in an edited book
de Smet MD & van Velthoven MEJ (2009) Combined Optical Coherence Tomography and Confocal Ophthalmoscopy (OCT/SLO). In: Optical Coherence Tomography in Age-Related Macular Degeneration: OCT in AMD. F. Coscas, S. Vismara, A. Zourdani & C.I.L. Calzi (eds). Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg. pp. 49–65.

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 (2016) Despite The Hype, Fewer Millennials Are Having Sex Than Predecessors. (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 (1972) Opportunities for Improving Cash Management Practices, Regional Finance and Data Processing Center, Paris, France. 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
Ramotar-John BP (2014) Supplementing soybean meal with Camelina (Camelina sativa) in tilapia diets and optimizing commercial tilapia diets for use in intensive systems in the Western region of the United States.

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
Gorman J (2017) Kangaroo Rats Outjump Rattlesnakes. New York Times:D3.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Koen 2003).
This sentence cites two references (Koen 2003; Ernst & Pawelzik 2011).

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

  • Two authors: (Ernst & Pawelzik 2011)
  • Three authors: (Murakami, Nagaosa & Zhang 2003)
  • 99 or more authors: (Santagiustina, Chin, Primerov, Ursini & Thévenaz 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