Journal of Biogeography

Cover image for Vol. 43 Issue 2

Edited By: Peter Linder

Impact Factor: 4.59

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2014: 3/46 (Geography Physical); 19/145 (Ecology)

Online ISSN: 1365-2699

Associated Title(s): Diversity and Distributions, Global Ecology and Biogeography

Author Guidelines

Did you know... Journal of Biogeography has no page charges?

Quick Links...Referrals to the Open Access

Online production tracking is available for your article through Wiley Blackwell’s Author Services

Author Services enables authors to track their article – once it has been accepted – through the production process to publication online and in print. Authors can check the status of their articles online and choose to receive automated e-mails at key stages of production. The author will receive an e-mail with a unique link that enables them to register and have their article automatically added to the system. Please ensure that a complete e-mail address is provided when submitting the manuscript. Visit for more details on online production tracking and for a wealth of resources including FAQs and tips on article preparation, submission and more.

Instructions for Authors
Papers dealing with all aspects of spatial, ecological and historical biogeography are considered for publication in the Journal of Biogeography. The mission of the Journal is to contribute to the growth and societal relevance of the discipline of biogeography through its role in the dissemination of biogeographical research. To that end, the editorial policy is that the Journal seeks to be representative of the discipline of biogeography, to be global in scope, and to be inclusive of major traditions and viewpoints in the discipline. Authors are particularly encouraged to submit concise, clearly written papers focused on precisely framed questions or hypotheses of broad interest to the wide international readership of the Journal, in addition we also publish review and opinion papers. Papers that are primarily descriptive and relevant only to the taxon being studied should be submitted to a more specialized journal. The Journal was established in 1974 and is published in 12 issues a year.

Review policy. To avoid unnecessary delay for authors, papers submitted to the Journal are first assessed editorially, and either are rejected outright at this stage or are entered into a full peer review process. We aim to reach an editorial decision on each manuscript in a timely fashion and to do so for first submissions in all cases within three months of receipt.

Requirements for submission
1. Manuscripts submitted to Journal of Biogeography must not be under consideration for publication elsewhere.
2. The corresponding author must ensure that for each the first and final rounds of submission each author named on the manuscript has approved the final version and consented to being named as an author on the manuscript, exactly as submitted to the journal.
3. All manuscripts submitted to the journal will be scanned using software designed to detect plagiarism. Where plagiarism is found, the submission may be rejected and/or authors' institutions may be notified.
4. Authors must disclose any conflict of interest that might be perceived as affecting the objectivity of conclusions, even if the conflict is only apparent.
5. All submissions must be concisely and clearly written in grammatically correct English.Manuscripts must have been read and edited by someone whose first language is English.

Article types and guidelines for layout The Journal publishes articles under the following main headers: 1) Perspectives, 2) Commentaries, 3) Original Articles, 4) Syntheses and 5) Correspondence. All submissions are subject to peer review.

1) Perspectives (formerly Guest Editorial)
The Perspectives section is intended for stimulating and reflective essays providing personal perspectives on key research fields and issues within biogeography. When published, Perspectives should be of no more than eight printed pages (main text maximum 5000 words; word count including abstract, main text and references 7000 words maximum but note that shorter articles are encouraged), and they should include a short, single-paragraph abstract, and a set of 6–10 keywords.

Manuscripts should be presented in the following order: title page, giving the article type: Perspectives, article title, author names, author research addresses, correspondence author’s name, address and e-mail, and short running head (maximum of 8 words); a single-paragraph abstract of up to 250 words; 6–10 keywords; main text; references (using the standard referencing system of the journal); tables with their legends above; list of figure legends; and embedded figures. A biosketch (see below) may be included after the references providing the overall paper length limit is not exceeded. The word count, inclusive of abstract, main text and references, should be stated on p1 of the manuscript. For an example of a Perspectives paper, click here.

2) Commentaries

Commentary submissions should provide readily intelligible comment on the latest original research in biogeography. The prose style should be light, and the article should be written with the minimum of technical language and jargon, so as to be understandable to a general audience or an undergraduate taking an introductory course in biogeography. Contributions will be subject to rapid peer review. Commentaries should occupy a maximum of two pages of the journal, and should have a maximum of 10 references. No biosketch is included for commentaries. Manuscripts should be presented in the following order: article type header: Commentary; article title (maximum of 10 words); main text (if headers are used within the text, keep them to a minimum); author names; author research addresses; correspondence author’s name, address and e-mail; and the references (using the standard referencing system of the journal). The overall word count, inclusive of all of the above (i.e. text, title, author details, references), should be stated on p1 of the manuscript and should not exceed 1600 words. Should you wish to include a small figure or other illustration, this can be accommodated by a reduction in the number of words on a pro rata basis. For an example of a Commentary, click here

3) Original Articles
Original Articles, which are the standard research papers, present new biogeographic research resulting from comprehensive analysis of a question in biogeography.Standard research papers are classed as Original Articles. Authors should prepare their manuscript so that, when published, the article will comprise not more than 10 to 12 published pages.  A single page of the journal can carry one of the following: (1) the article title, author list, abstract, and keywords; (2) about 1000 words of text (including subheadings); (3) about 30 references. For a typical Original Article, in which illustrative material (Tables and Figures) occupies about 3 pages of the journal when printed at final journal sizing, the text, inclusive of abstract and reference list, should not exceed 7000 words. The word count, inclusive of abstract, main text and references, should be stated on p1 of the manuscript.

Manuscripts should be presented in the following order: title page, giving the article type: Original Article, the article title, author names, author research addresses, correspondence author’s name, address and e-mail, and short running head (maximum of 8 words); a structured abstract (as detailed below); 6–10 keywords (in alphabetical order); main text; references (using the standard referencing system of the journal); biosketch (see below); tables with their legends above; list of figure legends; and embedded figures. The main headers for Original Articles should normally be Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results, Discussion, Acknowledgements, References.

Structured abstracts. Abstracts should be of no more than 300 words, presented as a series of factual statements under the following headings: Aim, Location, Methods, Results, and Main conclusions. The Aim should give a clear statement of the principal research question(s) or hypotheses, the Methods should give details of materials/sampling/methods of analysis, and the Main conclusions should give the main take-home message.

Biosketch/Biosketches. A short Biosketch/Biosketches entry (30-100 words for one author/150 words for the first three authors, respectively) describing the research interests of the author(s) should be provided. For papers with four or more authors, biosketch details should be supplied for the first author only and/or a general statement of the focus of the research team (which may include a link to a group web page) plus, in all cases, a statement of author contributions, e.g. Author contributions: A.S. and K.J. conceived the ideas; K.J. and R.L.M. collected the data; R.L.M. and P.A.K. analysed the data; and A.S. and K.J. led the writing.

For an example of a Original Article, click here.

4) Syntheses Papers that have the character of a theoretical synthesis or review, even if incorporating an element of original analysis within them, should use the strapline Synthesis. Guidelines are as for Original Articles but submissions to the Synthesis section may be of up to 10,000 words, or exceptionally more. Authors of synthesis papers are encouraged to discuss their planned paper with one of the Chief Editors, especially if the length will exceed 10,000 words providing such length is fully justified. In all cases, the word count, inclusive of abstract, main text and references, should be stated on p1 of the manuscript. For an example of a Synthesis paper, click here.

5) Correspondence The Journal welcomes short items of correspondence prompted by papers previously published in this or occasionally in other journals. The text should not normally exceed 2500 words, inclusive of a short one-paragraph abstract (up to 150 words), and a list of 6–10 keywords. No biosketch is necessary for Correspondence papers. The word count, inclusive of abstract, main text and references, should be stated on p1 of the manuscript. For an example of a Correspondence paper, click here.

Pre-submission English language editing Authors for whom English is a second language may choose to have their manuscript professionally edited before submission to improve the English. A list of independent suppliers of editing services can be found at Japanese authors can also find a list of local English improvement services at

Submission to the Journal of Biogeography is via an online submission process at It is strongly recommended that before submission authors download and then complete our Author Checklist, which is intended to assist authors in preparing a potentially successful submission. It is available from the ScholarOne Manuscripts site, where it can be found in the tab ‘Instructions and Forms’ at the top right hand corner of the main screen.

When submitting, authors should upload a single word file (.doc, .docx or .rtf) containing in sequence the text, tables with legends above, list of figure legends, and embedded figures. If the paper has Supporting Information (for online publication only), this material should be uploaded as separate editable files or, preferably, as one combined file, with embedded figures if applicable. Any explanatory notes, companion papers etc. for the attention of reviewers should be uploaded under 'Comments to reviewers'. Once the files have been uploaded, the system automatically creates a single PDF file for review purposes, combining the files designated as being for review. An optional cover letter for the editor may be uploaded separately.

Full instructions and support for authors can be found on the ScholarOne Manuscripts site. To use the site you will need a user ID and password. Go to the Journal's submission homepage ( and click 'New user' if you have not registered as an author before. If you require technical assistance with ScholarOne Manuscripts, you will find details of how to contact ScholarOne Support directly by clicking the GET HELP NOW link that appears at the top of every ScholarOne Manuscripts page. Alternatively, please contact the Editorial Office by e-mail.

The text
Manuscripts should bear the title of the contribution, names of the authors and complete addresses of the place(s) where the work was carried out. The full postal and e-mail address of the author who will receive correspondence and check the proofs should also be included, as well as the present address of any author if different from the place where the work was carried out. The title page should state the word count for the abstract and also for the main body of the text (inclusive of the abstract and references).

Manuscripts must be written in grammatically correct English (we use UK spellings following the Oxford English Dictionary); manuscripts written in poor English will not be sent out to review.

Manuscripts should be formatted as A4 with ample margins and double line spacing with continuous line numbers. All pages should be numbered in the top right hand corner. A range of three different headings levels may be used and authors should indicate the level of each heading by formatting them as bold–capital, bold–lower case or italics–lower case for main, second and third level heading, respectively.

The correct nomenclatural authorities for the main study species must be given on their first mention in the main body of text, or reference must be made to an appropriate nomenclatural source reference covering the taxa mentioned in the paper. Where specific equipment or software is mentioned, please give the manufacturer/company's name, town and country.

Conflict of Interest
Journal of Biogeography 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.

It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to review this policy with all authors and to collectively list in the manuscript (under the Acknowledgment section) and in the online submission system ALL pertinent commercial and other relationships.

Corresponding authors will be asked to confirm whether or not a conflict of interest exists as part of the submission process.

Journal of Biogeography is a member of and subscribes to the principles of the Committee on Publication Ethics.

Abbreviations and units
SI units (m, km2, kg, etc.) are preferred. Statistics and measurements should always be given in figures, i.e. 10 km, except where the number begins the paragraph. When the number does not refer to a unit of measurement, it is spelt out (e.g. three samples), except where the number is greater than or equal to 10 (e.g. 25 samples). Use: negative exponents (e.g. t year-1, not t/year); L for litres; 24 hour clock format (e.g. 10.00 h); and format dates as 31 March 1999. Journal style is 'Ma' for million years ago (dates and ages) and 'Myr' for million years (duration), and 'ka' for thousand years ago (dates and ages) and 'kyr' for thousand years (duration). The word 'Figure' should be abbreviated in the text, e.g. Fig. 1, Figs 2 & 3. All acronyms/abbreviations should be given in full at first mention. A list of preferred abbreviations and naming conventions is available here. The order of brackets should be {[()]}.

Tables should be cited consecutively in the text and included in the file at the end of the paper with the legends above. They should be editable and constructed using 'tabs' (not spaces or software options). Legends should be explicit and informative and should ‘stand alone’ from the main text, giving the study organism and study location and 'n' values where applicable. Column headings should be brief, with units of measurement in parentheses. All abbreviations should be defined.

Prepare figures such that, after reduction to print size, all lettering and symbols will be clear and easily read, and such that each figure makes effective use of space. If using colour please see the section on Colour figures, below.

For review purposes, figures should be embedded at the end of the text file. All illustrations (including photographs and maps) are classified as figures and they should be numbered consecutively as first cited in the text. Panels should be labelled (a), (b), (c), etc. rather than (A), (B), (C) etc. and referred to in the text as, for example, Fig. 1a. Figure legends should be listed at the end of the paper before the embedded figures. Legends should be explicit and informative and should ‘stand alone’ from the main text, giving the study organism and study location where applicable. All abbreviations should be defined.

Bar scales for maps and photographs are preferred to numerical scales and must be given on all such items. Maps that display area data and organism distribution at a continental, hemispheric, or world scale must always use an equal-area map projection (e.g. Mollweide or Aitoff's). Note especially that Mercator's projection is not acceptable for such data. Please indicate the precise projection employed in the caption. On these maps, the equatorial scale should be indicated, while scale information should be provided, preferably as a scale bar within the figure, for all maps of whatever size and area; use ‘km’ or ‘kilometres’, not ‘kilometers’. Maps should include adequate geo-referencing information.

If and when your paper is accepted for publication, the editorial office will request you to upload your figures as separate files in the format(s) specified below. When supplying these files, use the following naming convention: manuscript number, figure number and then the appropriate file extension e.g. 'JBI-08-0500_Fig1.tif'.

Photographic figures should be saved in .tif format at 300 d.p.i. (or failing that in .jpg format with low compression). Line figures should be saved as vector graphics (i.e. composed of lines, curves, points and fonts) in .eps or .pdf format, as this enhances their display when published online. Combination figures (those composed of vector and pixel/raster elements) should also be saved in .eps or .pdf format where possible. If line figures and combination figures cannot be saved in vector graphics format, they should be saved in .tif format at high resolution (i.e. 600–800 d.p.i.) (do not save them in .jpg format). If you are unsure about the resolution of your .tif files, please zoom in and check that fonts, curves and diagonal lines are smooth-edged and do not appear blocky. Note that .tif files are downsampled for online publication and so authors should preferentially opt for vector graphic formats for line and combination figures (full resolution .tif files are used for print publication). Colour figures should be saved in CYMK rather than RGB. Full artwork guidelines are given here.

Guidelines for Cover Submissions
If you would like to send suggestions for artwork related to your manuscript to be considered to appear on the cover of the journal, please follow these general guidelines.

Authors must use the system illustrated below. Unpublished data, works in preparation and papers submitted but not yet accepted may be cited in the text, giving the author's initials and surname, but should not be included in the reference list. It is the author's responsibility to obtain permission from colleagues to include their work as a personal communication. Please add the person’s initials, surname and institute for personal communications.

In the text, references should be made by giving the author's name with the year of publication, as follows: (Bush & Rivera, 1998). When reference is made to a work by three or more authors the first name followed by et al., is used on all occasions. If several papers by the same author and from the same year are cited, a, b, c, etc. should be put after the year of publication, as follows (Schoener & Schoener, 1983a,b). When citing a list of papers, place them in date order (alphabetically when within a year) and separate them with semi-colons as follows (Schoener & Schoener, 1983a,b; Bush & Rivera, 1998, 2003; Collins, 1998, 2002; Whittaker et al., 2007).

In the list, references should be sorted alphabetically by first author, then by number of authors (one, two, three or more), then chronologically within the one-author group, alphabetically within the two-author group, and chronologically within the ≥ three-author group. For multi-authored works with more than 20 authors, list only the first three authors followed by et al. Page extents of single-volume works are not required. Titles of journals should be given in full. Check the Journal for reference style. Some examples are given below:

Prentice, I.C., Guiot, J., Huntley, B., Jolly, D. & Cheddadi, R. (1996) Reconstructing biomes from palaeoecological data; a general method and its application to European pollen data at 0 and 6 ka. Climate Dynamics, 12, 185-194.

Cox, C. B. & Moore, P. D. (1999) Biogeography: an ecological and evolutionary approach, 6th edn. Blackwell Science Ltd, Oxford.

Guo, Q. (1994) Dynamic desert Puccinellia maritima plant community ecology: changes in space and time. PhD Thesis, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque.

May, R.M. (1994) The effects of spatial scale on ecological questions and answers. Large-scale ecology and conservation biology (ed. by P.J. Edwards, R.M. May and N.R. Webb), pp. 1-17. Blackwell Scientific Publications, Oxford.

StatSoft Inc. (2003) STATISTICA (data analysis software system), version 6.1. StatSoft, Inc., Tulsa, OK.

Click here to download the most up-to-date EndNote reference style for Journal of Biogeography.

Appendices and Supporting Information
Additional materials and results (including supporting tables and figures) that are necessary but do not need to be included in the main paper must be compiled into Appendices, which will be provided to readers as online Supporting Information. Such supporting information should be referred to in the text as, for example, 'see Appendix S1 in Supporting Information'; subsequent mention should be in the form 'see Appendix S2'. Figures and tables in the Supporting Information must be numbered consequetively by Appendix number and figure number: e.g. the first figure in Appendix 1 as Fig. S1.1, the first in Appendix 2 as Fig. S2.2 (if there is only one figure in Appendix 1). All appendices, figures and tables must be cited in the text. Authors should then include a 'Supporting Information' section immediately after their References section (i.e. before the Biosketch entry), which should be in the following form:

Supporting Information

Additional Supporting Information may be found in the online version of this article:

Appendix S1 Short title here.
Appendix S2 Short title here.


For reasons of space, only short titles to Supporting Information should be given in this section; full titles should be given with the Supporting Information itself and should include a fuller description of content, definition of abbreviations, etc. Each Appendix should be headed with the authors, title of the paper, and "Journal of Biogeography".

Supporting Information files are hosted by the Publisher in the format supplied by the author and are not copy-edited by the Publisher. It is the responsibility of the author to supply Supporting Information in an appropriate file format and to ensure that it is accurate and correct. Authors should therefore prepare Supporting Information with the same rigour as their main paper, including adherencesion to journal style (e.g. formatting of references, figure captions, headings). Sources cited only in the Supporting Information should be listed in a reference section within the supplementary files and not with the main paper. Supporting Information can be provided as separate editable files or, preferably, as one combined file. Authors are discouraged from supplying very large files or files in non-standard file formats, both of which may reduce their use to the readership. At the point a paper is accepted, these files should be prepared without line numbers or wide line spacing, and with all track-change edits accepted.

At proof correction stage authors will be given access to their Supporting Information (via the web) and should check it for accuracy and updates. If changes are required, corrected versions of the files that were received with the proof must be emailed to the Production Editor, with a brief description of the changes made. Supporting Information must be checked alongside the main proof and corrections for both returned to the Production Editor at the same time.

Data Accessibility
Authors who wish to provide a consolidated statement of how other readers can access the data used in their paper may wish to refer to outside data repositories where they have deposited their data, e.g. Dryad, Pangaea, or others. If so, this statement should be included after the Supporting Information section and before the Biosketch entry. A typical entry might read as follows:

All topographic and environmental GIS layers, the habitat suitability model and BTM results generated for this study are available as raster grids from the Pangaea database:

Policy on data publication, molecular sequences and vouchers
Consistent with widely adopted conventions in the field, it is a condition of publication that papers using new molecular sequences must place the sequences in an appropriate database (e.g. GenBank). Relevant accession numbers should be provided in the final manuscript. Accession numbers are required for all sequences used in analyses, including existing sequences in databases. Museum voucher numbers should also be provided where doing so constitutes the appropriate best practice and/or where this information could be of real value to future researchers. More generally, the journal recognizes that what is considered appropriate best practice regarding data publication/deposition may vary depending on factors such as the nature of the data, the funding sources involved, complexities of prior intellectual ownership issues, etc.  We therefore strongly encourage (where appropriate) but do not require (where it may not be) authors to publish/deposit data sets in conjunction with papers being published in this journal.

Copyright, OnlineOpen and colour figure charges
Journal of Biogeography operates two publication models: (1) our standard model for which no page charges apply; and (2) a pay-to-publish OnlineOpen model. Publication is conditional on authors completing and returning an Copyright Transfer Agreement Form or the online Open Access form (see links above), respectively. In addition, all papers including colour artwork are subject to charges (see 'Colour figures' below). The relevant forms must be completed and returned to the Production Editor on acceptance: papers will not be sent for typesetting until then.

Copyright Transfer Agreement Form
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

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 and visit 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:

Colour figures

Charges apply for the reproduction of colour figures in the hard copy of the journal. So, if your paper contains colour figures, the Colour Work Agreement form (available here), which outlines the charges, must be completed by the corresponding author and sent to Wiley Blackwell at acceptance. If using a limited colour palette we ask that authors avoid using red with green as this is a common colour-blindness combination.  If you are not prepared to pay for colour in print, figures will be produced in colour in electronic versions of the paper, but black and white in the print copy.  For the convenience of readers, we ask that you design your colour artwork so that it can be understood as best as possible in greyscale.  Note that the same figure file must be used for both the print and online versions (we do not accept differing colour and black-and-white versions of the same figure). Authors must complete the Colour Work Agreement form even if they opt for colour online/black and white in print. Articles received by Wiley Blackwell with colour work will not be published until the form has been received. Please send a scanned copy of the form to our production editor ( for information and, if paying for colour, post the hard copy of the form to: Customer Services (OPI), John Wiley & Sons Ltd, European Distribution Centre, New Era Estate, Oldlands Way, Bognor Regis, West Sussex, PO22 9NQ.

Referrals to the Open Access Journal "Ecology and Evolution" and and "Geo: Geography and Evironment"
This journal works together with Wiley’s Open Access journals, Ecology and Evolution and Geo: Geography and Evironment, to enable rapid publication of good quality research that we are unable to accept for publication. Authors may be offered the option of having their paper, along with any related reviews, automatically transferred for consideration by the Editors of Ecology and Evolution or Geo: Geography and Evironment. Authors will not need to reformat or rewrite their manuscript at this stage, and publication decisions will be made a short time after the transfer takes place. The Editors of Ecology and Evolution and Geo: Geography and Evironment will accept submissions that report well-conducted research and which reach the standard acceptable for publication. Accepted papers can be published rapidly, typically within 15 days of acceptance. Ecology and Evolution and Geo: Geography and Evironment are Wiley Open Access journals and article publication fees apply. More information can be found here.

Archive policy
Please note that unless specifically requested, the Publisher will dispose of all electronic material submitted 2 months after publication.

PDF proofs will be sent to the corresponding author by e-mail and they should be returned to the Production Editor within two weeks of receipt. Where this is not possible authors should e-mail the Production Editor ( to advise of the delay. We strongly encourage corresponding authors to circulate their proof (including supporting information) for checking to all co-authors. Major alterations to the text and illustrations are only accepted when absolutely necessary; the additional costs may be charged to the author.

Free access to the final PDF offprint of your article will be available via Author Services only. Please therefore sign up for Author Services if you would like to access your article PDF offprint and enjoy the many other benefits the service offers.