Zoo Biology

Cover image for Vol. 34 Issue 5

Executive Editor: Jason V. Watters

Impact Factor: 0.831

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2014: 72/133 (Veterinary Sciences); 101/154 (Zoology)

Online ISSN: 1098-2361

Author Guidelines

NIH Public Access Mandate
For those interested in the Wiley-Blackwell policy on the NIH Public Access Mandate, please visit our policy statement.

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Publication Forms

Author Guidelines

Note to authors: This journal is a tool to help move the science of Zoo Biology forward. We ask reviewers to comment on whether the manuscript contains new and noteworthy information. Thus, while we may sometimes publish multiple papers about the same topic or that use similar methods, having done so does not guarantee that we will continue to do so.

Manuscript Types
Title Page
Figures and Images
English Language editing
Conflict of Interest
Copyright/Licensing Agreements
Production Questions

Note to NIH Grantees. Pursuant to the NIH mandate, Wiley-Blackwell will post the accepted version of contributions authored by NIH grant-holders to PubMed Central upon acceptance. This accepted version will be made publicly available 12 months after publication. For further information, see www.wiley.com/go/nihmandate.

Search Engine Optimization for Your Paper
Consult our SEO Tips for Authors page in order to maximize online discoverability for your published research. Included are tips for making your title and abstract SEO-friendly, choosing appropriate keywords, and promoting your research through social media.


All manuscripts submitted to Zoo Biology must be submitted solely to this journal via ScholarOne Manuscripts and may not have been published in any substantial form in any other publication, professional or lay. The publisher reserves copyright and no published material may be reproduced or published elsewhere without the written permission of the publisher. The journal is not responsible for the loss of manuscripts at any time. All statements in, or omissions from, published manuscripts are the responsiblity of the authors who will assist the editors by reviewing proofs before publication. Reprints may be purchased at https://caesar.sheridan.com/reprints/redir.php?pub=10089&acro=zoo. Aside from the optional color figure charge, no page charges will be levied against authors or their institutions for publication in the journal.

Editor's Note on Readability

It is important that authors try to make papers as readable as possible. Enhanced readability will increase the chances that your findings are applied. Consider these points when you strive to enhance the readability of your manuscript:

  • Use an active voice rather than a passive one.
  • It is acceptable to write in the first person.
  • Break long, windy sentences into several short, crisp ones.
  • Minimize the use of jargon.
  • Don’t hide what you are trying to say in confusing words. Make the meaning of each sentence clear.

The editor will return any manuscript that does not meet the journal's needs or standards for content, style, or grammar.


Manuscript Types

  • Research Article (5000 words): illustrates theoretic/empirical questions with quantitative results, and conclusions
  • Research Review (5000 words): illustrates current literature on a zoo related topic
  • Research Review with Case Studies (5000 words): aimed to allow authors to thoroughly review a topic and suggest new directions. These reviews aim to assist in building an evidence-based understanding of issues by showcasing embedded case studies in the review. Authors can embed up to three 300 word case studies in "boxes" in the published manuscript. These reviews should help authors to place small studies into a larger context. Authors should clearly indicate the portion of the manuscript that describes a case study when submitting.
  • Brief Report (1500 words): short, focused reports
  • Husbandry Report and Technical Papers (1500-2000 words): an article or case study on demonstration of technique, care, or welfare of animals in captivity
  • By author query only (email zoobiology@sfzoo.org)
    • Commentary
    • Book Review

Please note suggested word limits do not include Abstract, References, Tables and Figures.


  • All manuscripts must be submitted in English (American style). They must be typewritten and double-spaced.
  • Manuscripts should have 3 cm margins throughout.
  • Use Times New Roman font in size 11.
  • Consecutively number each line from the Introduction through the References.
  • Consecutively number each page beginning with the Title page.
  • Place the first author's surname and the page number in the upper left hand corner of each page.

Divide manuscripts into the major sections given below

Title page

The first page of every manuscript should consist of a single cover page and include:

  • The complete title of the paper
  • The names of all authors and their affiliations
  • A running head (a short title not more than 40 characters including spaces)
  • The name, address, fax and telephone numbers, and e-mail address of the corresponding author
  • Manuscript Word Count, excluding Abstract, References, Tables and Figures


The abstract is a factual condensation of the entire work. It includes a statement of the paper’s purpose, and a clear description of the most important results. Abstracts should not exceed 250 words. Immediately below the abstract list three to six key words (not in title). These words are used in indexing the published article.


  • Organize Research Papers and Brief reports into the following divisions: Introduction, Materials/Methods, Results, Discussion, Conclusions, Acknowledgments, References, Table Legends and Figure Legends.
  • Research Reviews may follow this format or use alternative section headings but must include an Introduction, Discussion and Conclusions.
  • Results should be a clear presentation of the findings. Use tables and figures where possible (refer to them in numerical order in text).
  • Write concise conclusions and arrange them in a numbered list.
  • Organize Husbandry Reports and Technical Papers into the following divisions: Statement of the Problem, Description of the Process, Demonstration of Efficacy, Acknowledgements, References, Table Legends and Figure Legends.
  • Acknowledgments may include citation of funding sources, including the agency, and grant number; names of non-authors who contributed to research; facilities accreditation, or information relevant to scientific research ethics; new affiliations of authors; and other brief notes in lieu of footnotes to the text.
  • Use subheadings and paragraph titles wherever necessary or appropriate.

When appropriate provide a statement of compliance with the "Guidelines for the use of animals in research," published in Animal Behavior, Vol 43, 1992. If photos or identifiable data on human subjects are included in any manuscript a notarized letter of consent must accompany them.

Do not use Footnotes. Give all measurements in metric units and abbreviate them according to the CSE Style Manual, 7th edition (Council of Science Editors, formally known as Council of Biology Editors). Indicate in the text the approximate placement of figures and tables. Keep non-standard abbreviations to a minimum and define them at first use in the text.


Arrange the References list alphabetically by first author's surname. For in-text citations, provide the author’s surname and year of publication. Arrange in-text citations by first author’s surname and year of publication alphabetically, not chronologically. For both in-text citations and References list, place multiple references by the same first author in chronological order. References need to conform to the style used in CSE Style Manual, 7th edition (Rockefeller University Press).

Journal article
Freeman EW, Schulte BA, Brown JL. 2010. Investigating the impact of rank and ovarian activity on the social behavior of captive female African elephants. Zoo Biol 29: 154–167.

List all authors if there are five or fewer; when there are six or more authors, list the first three followed by et al.

Lynch Alfaro JW, Boubli JP, Olson LE, et al.2011. Explosive Pleistocene range expansion leads to widespread Amazonian sympatry between robust and gracile capuchin monkeys. J Biogeogr 39:272–288.

Standard book
Dytham C. 2011. Choosing and using statistics: A biologist's guide. 3rd Edition. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell. 320 p.

Book authored by organization
[ILAR] Institute of Laboratory Animal Resources. 2011. Animal research in a global environment: Meeting the challenges: Proceedings of the November 2008 International Workshop.Washington, DC: National Academy of Sciences.

Book chapter
Brook BW. 2008. Demographics versus genetics in conservation biology. In: Carroll SC, Fox CW, editors. Conservation biology: Evolution in action. New York: Oxford University Press. p 35-49.

van der Harst JE. 2003. Tools to measure and improve welfare of laboratory rats: Reward-related behaviour and environmental enrichment. [dissertation]. Utrecht: Utrecht University.


Place Legends on a separate page. For each Table and Figure provide Legends in numerical order. Define all abbreviations used.


Title and consecutively number Tables. Use Tables for presenting data too complex to include in the text. Be sure to refer to Tables in the text. Table titles should be concise descriptions of the data in the table. Table footnotes should provide more detail relating to the interpretation of data presented in the table (i.e., notes on sample sizes, tests performed, etc.). Samples are shown below:

Table title: Leadership of Group Movements by Males and Females within Each Group
Table footnote: Chi-square results for adult female- versus adult male-led group progressions overall (A), when feeding occurred within 5 min of group movement (B), and when feeding did not occur within 5 min of group movement (C). N refers to the number of progressions led by each sex. Females in each group, except C3, led group movements significantly more than males overall and in all contexts.

Table title: Food Species and Plant Parts in the Diet of Rhinopithecus brelichi at Yangaoping, Guizhou During the Study Period
Table footnote: Season: Sp, spring (February, March, April); Su, summer (May, June, July); A, autumn (August, September, October); W, winter (November, December, January); Y, four seasons.
E, evergreen; D, deciduous

Figures and Images

Follow these instructions to make Figures that will reproduce best.

  • Submit Figures as separate, individual TIFF or EPS files only. Do not embed figures in the main text files.
  • Number Figures according to their numerical sequence in the text. Provide a legend of captions for each figure.
  • Black and white figures should have a minimum resolution of no less than 300dpi.
  • Color figures will be reproduced online free of charge; authors who opt to print figures in color will be charged $950 for the first page, and $500 for each of the next three pages. A color charge form is included with the author proofs.


We request revision of nearly every manuscript we publish. Revised papers are re-reviewed. Authors should facilitate this second review by clearly indicating changes to the original manuscript. Each of the reviewers’ comments should be acknowledged and either addressed or refuted. Provide a letter that describes how you addressed each comment in the revision. Your letter should restate the reviewer comment, provide your response and do the same for the next comment and so on. Provide line numbers and restate section headings where useful. Making this letter as clear as possible will help editorial board members as well as reviewers with their assessment of the revision. One possible approach to describing revisions is to do so in a table. The table below, provided by the science team at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, is an example response to reviewer comments. It allows a quick assessment of how you addressed reviewer comments. In this way, editors and reviewers can efficiently evaluate your manuscript changes.

Response to reviewer comments

Reviewer #1

Comment/Concern Section, Page, Line Author Response
The range of literature is adequate, though several references are out of date. More recent publications are available on this subject (including from this journal). Introduction Our introduction has been updated to include more recent publications that represent a more complete view on this subject. Included citations are below.

Doe et al. (2014)
Smith et al. (2009)
Stern et al. (2013)
Institution 8 collected data differently, with 15-min observations as opposed to the 30-min observation periods used at Institutions 1-7. These data are most likely not comparable, as they will under-represent some behavioral activities at Institution 8. Method, page 7, line 180 We understand your point. However, data were statistically analyzed as a repeated measures ANOVA, so each institution was compared only to itself. The main research question focused on observing changes at each institution, not necessarily comparing rates of behavior between institutions. What we examined between institutions was the directionality of the change. Therefore, we feel the data from Institution 8 are valid.
Line 300 is quite a large leap of inference. Possibly too great a leap. It is unclear from your study if the change you implemented had any real effect on behavior. Discussion, page 12, line 300 We agree. We have softened the language to suggest these ideas need further testing.
It would be worth adding something towards the end of the discussion on what the feedback was like from the participating institutions, in terms of implementing this research and if the changes made are something they are planning to continue with, or if it was just a experimental change and removed permanently following the study. Discussion Good point. To date, two of the institutions are currently maintaining our implemented changes with continued success. The remaining institutions returned to their respective baseline conditions for a myriad of reasons including cost, required time and effort, and non-compliance from the animals. We have added this information to the discussion.

Reviewer #2

Comment/Concern Section, Page, Line Author Response
Total data collected per group is unclear. If fifteen 30-min observations were collected over both pre and post phases, this would equal 15 hours/group, not 30 hours as stated. Methods, page 6, Line 115 Yes, total hours per group should be 15. This has been corrected.
No mention of ethics regarding animal care/welfare during this study. Methods This study was reviewed and approved by each participating institutions animal care and use committee. Methods have been updated to include this statement.
Table 3, institution 3 and institution 7 are missing F and p values. Results, page 10, line 375 This has been corrected.
From line 400, are the authors suggesting that a group of 7 subjects is likely to be significantly more socially appropriate than 6? Discussion, page 8, line 400 We are suggesting here that the demographic structure, not the group size per se, may have affected the way social behavior was expressed. Institution 6 had a group of 6 elderly individuals, while institution 7 had a group composed of 1 elderly individual, 3 adults, 2 juveniles and 1 infant. We have added information that will help make the distinction between these two groups more clear.
Check citation format References, page 20, line 10 Following the CSE Style Manual, 7th Edition, when a paper contains more than 6 authors, list the first 3 followed by et al. This was correct and maintained.


Authors are encouraged to submit a potential cover image with their manuscript. The editor will consider these submissions if the accompanying manuscript is accepted for publication. We prefer animal portraits and/or animals in natural-looking exhibits, but will consider other images. Please be certain to mark the cover file as “cover” to distinguish it from the figure files. Cover figures should measure at least 177x209 mm. The subject of the image should occur in the middle or bottom of the frame.

English Language Editing

If you are not a native English speaker, we strongly recommend that you have your manuscript professionally edited BEFORE submission. Professional editing will mean that reviewers are better able to read and assess your manuscript. Please consult the Author Services page found at http://authorservices.wiley.com/bauthor/english_language.asp for a list of recommended services. Authors in Japan may consult our Japanese language page at http://www.wiley.co.jp/journals/editcontribute/editservlist.html that also provides a list of recommended services.

Conflict of Interest

ZOO BIOLOGY requires that all authors disclose any potential sources of conflict of interest. Any interest or relationship, financial or otherwise, that might be perceived as influencing an author’s objectivity is considered a potential source of conflict of interest. These must be disclosed when directly relevant or indirectly related to the work that the authors describe in their manuscript. Potential sources of conflict of interest include but are not limited to patent or stock ownership, membership of a company board of directors, membership of an advisory board or committee for a company, and consultancy for or receipt of speaker’s fees from a company. The existence of a conflict of interest does not preclude publication in this journal.

If the authors have no conflict of interest to declare, they must also state this at submission. It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to review this policy with all authors and to collectively list in the cover letter (if applicable) to the Executive Editor, in the manuscript (in the footnotes, Conflict of Interest or Acknowledgments section), and in the online submission system ALL pertinent commercial and other relationships.

Copyright/Licensing Agreements

If your paper is accepted, the author identified as the formal corresponding author for the paper will receive an email prompting them to login into Author Services; where via the Wiley Author Licensing Service (WALS) they will be able to complete the license agreement on behalf of all authors on the paper.
For authors signing the copyright transfer agreement:
If the OnlineOpen option is not selected the corresponding author will be presented with the copyright transfer agreement (CTA) to sign. The terms and conditions of the CTA can be previewed in the samples associated with the Copyright FAQs below:
CTA Terms and Conditions http://authorservices.wiley.com/bauthor/faqs_copyright.asp
For authors choosing OnlineOpen:
If the OnlineOpen option is selected the corresponding author will have a choice of the following Creative Commons License Open Access Agreements (OAA):
Creative Commons Attribution License OAA
Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License OAA
Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial -NoDerivs License OAA
To preview the terms and conditions of these open access agreements please visit the Copyright FAQs hosted on Wiley Author Services http://authorservices.wiley.com/bauthor/faqs_copyright.asp and visit http://www.wileyopenaccess.com/details/content/12f25db4c87/Copyright--License.html
If you select the OnlineOpen option and your research is funded by The Wellcome Trust and members of the Research Councils UK (RCUK) you will be given the opportunity to publish your article under a CC-BY license supporting you in complying with Wellcome Trust and Research Councils UK requirements. For more information on this policy and the Journal’s compliant self-archiving policy please visit: http://www.wiley.com/go/funderstatement.

Referrals to the Open Access Journal Veterinary Medicine and Science: This journal works together with Wiley’s open access journal, Veterinary Medicine and Science, to enable rapid publication of good quality research that is unable to be accepted for publication by this journal. Authors may be offered the option of having their paper, along with any related peer reviews, automatically transferred for consideration by the Editor of Veterinary Medicine and Science. Authors who accept transfer would not need to reformat or rewrite their manuscript at this stage, and publication decisions would be made a short time after the transfer takes place. The Editor of Veterinary Medicine and Science will accept submissions that report well-conducted research which reaches the standard acceptable for publication. Accepted papers can be published rapidly, typically within 20 days of acceptance. Veterinary Medicine and Science is a Wiley Open Access journal and article publication fees apply.

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