How to format your references using the Palaeontology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Palaeontology. 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
POLLITZ, F. F. 2006. Geophysics. A new class of earthquake observations. Science (New York, N.Y.), 313, 619–620.
A journal article with 2 authors
HATTORI, M. and GOUAUX, E. 2012. Molecular mechanism of ATP binding and ion channel activation in P2X receptors. Nature, 485, 207–212.
A journal article with 3 authors
ALFORD, R. A., BRADFIELD, K. S. and RICHARDS, S. J. 2007. Ecology: global warming and amphibian losses. Nature, 447, E3-4; discussion E5-6.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
THIEBAUT DE SCHOTTEN, M., URBANSKI, M., DUFFAU, H., VOLLE, E., LÉVY, R., DUBOIS, B. and BARTOLOMEO, P. 2005. Direct evidence for a parietal-frontal pathway subserving spatial awareness in humans. Science (New York, N.Y.), 309, 2226–2228.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
SMITH, R. A. 2010. Virgil. Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK.
An edited book
2010. Biocatalysis Based on Heme Peroxidases: Peroxidases as Potential Industrial Biocatalysts. In TORRES, E. and AYALA, M. (eds.) Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
MEYER, F. 2013. Flooding Edge Weighted Graphs. In KROPATSCH, W. G., ARTNER, N. M., HAXHIMUSA, Y. and JIANG, X. (eds.) Graph-Based Representations in Pattern Recognition: 9th IAPR-TC-15 International Workshop, GbRPR 2013, Vienna, Austria, May 15-17, 2013. Proceedings, Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, 31–40 pp.

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 Palaeontology.

Blog post
DAVIS, J. 2015. The Loss Of Large Herbivores Can Alter Ecosystems For Thousands Of Years. IFLScience. Downloaded from on 30 October 2018. IFLScience.


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. 1998. District of Columbia Public Schools: Availability of Funds and the Cost of FY 1997 Roof Projects. 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
DEROSE, C. T. 2009. Electro-optic polymers: Materials and devices.Doctoral dissertation, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZpp.

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
OESTREICH, J. R. 2017. A Divine Crucifixion, With Lingerie. New York Times, C5.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Pollitz 2006).
This sentence cites two references (Pollitz 2006; Hattori & Gouaux 2012).

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

  • Two authors: (Hattori & Gouaux 2012)
  • Three or more authors: (Thiebaut de Schotten et al. 2005)

About the journal

Full journal titlePalaeontology
ISSN (print)0031-0239
ISSN (online)1475-4983
ScopeEcology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

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