Austral Ecology

Cover image for Vol. 42 Issue 2

Edited By: Nigel Andrew

Impact Factor: 1.598

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2015: 91/150 (Ecology)

Online ISSN: 1442-9993

Associated Title(s): Ecological Management & Restoration

Author Guidelines


1. Submission
2. Aims and Scope
3. Manuscript Categories and Requirements
4. Preparing Your Submission
5. Editorial Policies and Ethical Considerations
6. Author Licensing
7. Publication Process After Acceptance
8. Post Publication


Thank you for your interest in Austral Ecology. Please read the complete Author Guidelines carefully prior to submission. Note that submission implies that the content has not been published or submitted for publication elsewhere except as a brief abstract in the proceedings of a scientific meeting or symposium.

Once you have prepared your submission in accordance with the Guidelines, manuscripts should be submitted online at

The submission system will prompt you to use an ORCiD (a unique author identifier) to help distinguish your work from that of other researchers. Click here to find out more.

Click here for more details on how to use ScholarOne.

For help with submissions, please contact:

We look forward to your submission.


Austral Ecology is the premier journal for basic and applied ecology in the Southern Hemisphere. As the official Journal of The Ecological Society of Australia (ESA), Austral Ecology addresses the commonality between ecosystems in Australia and many parts of southern Africa, South America, New Zealand and Oceania. For example many species in the unique biotas of these regions share common Gondwana ancestors. ESA's aim is to publish innovative research to encourage the sharing of information and experiences that enrich the understanding of the ecology of the Southern Hemisphere.

Austral Ecology involves an editorial board with representatives from Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, Brazil and Argentina. These representatives provide expert opinions, access to qualified reviewers and act as a focus for attracting a wide range of contributions from countries across the region.

Austral Ecology publishes original papers describing experimental, observational or theoretical studies on terrestrial, marine or freshwater systems, which are considered without taxonomic bias. Special thematic issues are published regularly, including symposia on the ecology of estuaries and soft sediment habitats, freshwater systems and coral reef fish.


World Limits

There is a word limit of 300 words for the abstract and of 7,500 words for the rest of the text including the reference list and citations.

Original Articles

The journal welcomes original articles on a range of topics. Refer to the Aims and Scope for details.

Review articles

Review articles that are brief, synthetic and/or provocative are occasionally commissioned by the Editors. These submissions are reviewed under the journal’s usual standards. It is normal for there to be some negotiation between the invited author and the commissioning Editor about the content and timing of any invited submission. Please contact the Editors if you would like to write such a review. Unsolicited review manuscripts may also be considered.  

Acceptance Criteria

1. Normally the paper should relate to ecosystems in the Southern Hemisphere, although general theoretical papers are acceptable, as are those with a Northern Hemisphere basis, but that have implications for Southern Hemisphere ecosystems.

2. The paper can describe studies in terrestrial, aquatic or marine habitats. They can be at a local, regional or global scale but should be set in a broad ecological context, and contribute new information towards some general question. Specifically, we do not publish papers that simply describe an ecosystem or a local ecological pattern. Nor do we publish papers that ask ecological questions that are only relevant to some local region (e.g. how does fire affect plant communities in the Mount Lofty Ranges, South Australia), although local studies that can make new contributions to broader generalizations can be accepted.

3. A review paper should not just list all of the relevant publications but should provide insights, by some novel synthesis or analysis, of trends that can be revealed from previously published research.

4. The paper should ask questions relating to the patterns observed in ecosystems, at the level of the individual organism, the population, the ecological community or the landscape. The study might be motivated by either basic or applied research questions. Sometimes those questions and the derived explanations will have relevance to ecosystem management issues, but the papers in Austral Ecology should focus on the science in the study. The results of the study might form the basis for management or policy recommendations, which should be submitted to alternative publishing outlets.

5. Papers can cover a broad range of ecological topics from landscape ecology and ecosystem dynamics to individual population dynamics and behavioural ecology.

6. The paper needs a logical structure with a specific question that is addressed by the methods and analysis.

7. Conclusions need to be supported by the results presented.

8. Studies need to be well supported by appropriate statistical analyses that are reported in sufficient detail to allow readers to assess the rigour of the conclusions. Where replication is impractical, the implications for interpretation should be acknowledged.


General Style Points

• Manuscripts should be double-spaced.
• The journal uses UK spelling.
• All measurements must be given in SI units
• Abbreviations should be used sparingly. Initially use the word in full, followed by the abbreviation in parentheses. Thereafter use the abbreviation.
• At the first mention of a chemical substance, give the generic name only.
• Trade names should not be used.  

Parts of the Manuscript

The manuscript should be submitted in separate files: title page; main text file; figures.

Title page

The title page should contain:
(i) a short informative title that contains the major key words. The title should not contain abbreviations (see Wiley's best practice SEO tips);
(ii) the full names of the authors;
(iii) the author's institutional affiliations at which the work was carried out;
(iv) the full postal and email address, plus telephone number, of the author to whom correspondence about the manuscript should be sent;
(v) acknowledgements.

The present address of any author, if different from that where the work was carried out, should be supplied in a footnote.

Acknowledgements: The source of financial grants and other funding should be acknowledged, including a frank declaration of the authors’ industrial links and affiliations. The contribution of colleagues or institutions should also be acknowledged.

Main text

The main text file should be presented in the following order: (i) title, abstract and key words, (ii) main text, (iii) references, (iv) tables (each table complete with title and footnotes) (v) figure legends, (vi) appendices (if relevant). Figures and supporting information should be supplied as separate files.

Footnotes to the text are not allowed and any such material should be incorporated into the text as parenthetical matter.  

Articles must have an abstract that states in 300 words or less the purpose, basic procedures, main findings and principal conclusions of the study. The abstract should not contain abbreviations or references. The names of organisms used should be given.

Five key words should be supplied below the abstract for the purposes of indexing.  

Authors should use the following subheadings to divide the sections of their manuscript: Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, Species Nomenclature, Acknowledgements, References. These sections of the text should be less than 7,500 words.

Introduction: This section should include sufficient background information to set the work in context. The aims of the manuscript, and why these aims are of broad ecological interest, should be clearly stated. The introduction should not contain either findings or conclusions.

Methods: This should be concise but provide sufficient detail to allow the work to be repeated by others.

Results: Results should be presented in a logical sequence in the text, tables and figures; repetitive presentation of the same data in different forms should be avoided. The results should not contain material appropriate to the Discussion.

Discussion: This should consider the results in relation to any hypotheses advanced in the Introduction and place the study in the context of other work. Only in exceptional cases should the Results and Discussion sections be combined.  

Species nomenclature: When the generic or specific name of the major study organism(s) is first used, the taxonomic family or affiliation should also be mentioned, both in the abstract and in the body of the text.  

Upon its first use in the title, abstract and text, the common name of a species should be followed by the scientific name (genus and species) in parentheses. However, for wellknown species, the scientific name may be omitted from the article title. If no common name exists in English, the scientific name should be used only.  

The Harvard (author, date) system of referencing is used. Consult a recent issue of the journal for the referencing format.

Personal communications, unpublished data and publications from informal meetings are not to be listed in the reference list but should be listed in full in the text with a year date (e.g. A. Smith, unpublished data, 2000).  

References in articles: We recommend the use of a tool such as EndNote or Reference Manager for reference management and formatting.

EndNote styles can be searched for here:

Reference Manager styles can be searched for here:  

Tables should be self-contained and complement, but not duplicate, information contained in the text. Tables should be numbered consecutively in Arabic numerals. Column headings should be brief, with units of measurement in parentheses; all abbreviations should be defined in footnotes. Footnote symbols: †, ‡, §, , should be used (in that order) and *, **, *** should be reserved for P values. The table and its legend/footnotes should be understandable without reference to the text.  

Figure Legends
Legends should be concise but comprehensive – the figure and its legend must be understandable without reference to the text. Include definitions of any symbols used and define/explain all abbreviations and units of measurement.

Preparing Figures
Although we encourage authors to send us the highest-quality figures possible, for peer-review purposes we are happy to accept a wide variety of formats, sizes, and resolutions.

Click here for the basic figure requirements for figures submitted with manuscripts for initial peer review, as well as the more detailed post-acceptance figure requirements.

Colour figures: Figures submitted in colour may be reproduced in colour online free of charge. Please note, however, that it is preferable that line figures (e.g. graphs and charts) are supplied in black and white so that they are legible if printed by a reader in black and white. If you wish to have figures printed in colour in hard copies of the journal, a fee will be charged by the Publisher.


Appendices will be published after the references. For submission they should be supplied as separate files but referred to in the text.

Supporting Information

Supporting information is information that is not essential to the article but that provides greater depth and background. It is hosted online, and appears without editing or typesetting. It may include tables, figures, videos, datasets, etc. Click here for Wiley’s FAQs on supporting information.

Note, if data, scripts or other artefacts used to generate the analyses presented in the paper are available via a publicly available data repository, authors should include a reference to the location of the material within their paper.

Supporting figures, tables and files should be labelled consecutively as Appendix S1, Appendix S2, etc. Authors should refer to this material in the text of their papers using those titles. Authors are also requested to provide abbreviated headings of no more than 100 characters including spaces for each of their figures and tables of Supporting Information and include a list of these abbreviated headings after the reference list.

Wiley Author Resources

Wiley has a range of resources for authors preparing manuscripts for submission available here. In particular, authors may benefit from referring to Wiley’s best practice tips on Writing for Search Engine Optimization.

Editing, Translation and Formatting Support: Wiley Editing Services can greatly improve the chances of your manuscript being accepted. Offering expert help in English language editing, translation, manuscript formatting and figure preparation, Wiley Editing Services ensures that your manuscript is ready for submission.


Editorial Review and Acceptance

Austral Ecology is single-blind peer reviewed unless otherwise stated.

Research Ethics

Papers describing experiments that involve procedures that could impact on the welfare of vertebrate animals must include a statement that the reseach has been approved by an appropriate animal welfare or ethics committee, and that it conforms to the national guidelines for animal usage in research.

Publication Ethics

This journal is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). Read our Top 10 Publishing Ethics Tips for Authors here. Wiley’s Publication Ethics Guidelines can be found at


If your paper is accepted, the author identified as the formal corresponding author will receive an email prompting them to log in to Author Services, where via the Wiley Author Licensing Service (WALS) they will be required to complete a copyright license agreement on behalf of all authors of the paper.

Authors may choose to publish under the terms of the journal’s standard copyright agreement, or OnlineOpen under the terms of a Creative Commons License.

General information regarding licensing and copyright is available here. To review the Creative Commons License options offered under OnlineOpen, please click here. (Note that certain funders mandate that a particular type of CC license has to be used; to check this please click here.)

Self-Archiving definitions and policies. Note that the journal’s standard copyright agreement allows for self-archiving of different versions of the article under specific conditions. Please click here for more detailed information about self-archiving definitions and policies.

Open Access fees: If you choose to publish using OnlineOpen you will be charged a fee. A list of Article Publication Charges for Wiley journals is available here.

Funder Open Access: Please click here for more information on Wiley’s compliance with specific Funder Open Access Policies.


Accepted article received in production

When your accepted article is received by Wiley’s production production team, you (corresponding authors) will receive an email asking you to login or register with Author Services. You will be asked to sign a publication licence at this point.


Once your paper is typeset you will receive email notification of the URL from where to download a PDF typeset page proof, associated forms and full instructions on how to correct and return the file. Please note that you are responsible for all statements made in your work, including changes made during the editorial process and thus you must check your proofs carefully. Note that proofs should be returned 48 hours from receipt of first proof.

Page charges

A charge of A$11.00 per printed page will be levied on each article appearing in the journal (not including thesis abstracts and book reviews). These charges are payable to Wiley Publishing Pty Ltd and will be invoiced when page proofs are sent to the authors. This procedure notwithstanding, no paper will be rejected or given any extraordinary treatment on the basis other than its scientific merit. Contributors not in receipt of institutional or grant-based support may apply to the Managing Editor for exemption from page charges.    

Early View

The journal offers rapid speed to publication via Wiley’s Early View service. Early View (Online Version of Record) articles are published on Wiley Online Library before inclusion in an issue. Note there may be a delay after corrections are received before your article appears online, as Editors also need to review proofs. Once your article is published on Early View no further changes to your article are possible. Your Early View article is fully citable and carries an online publication date and DOI for citations.


Access and sharing

When your article is published online:
• You receive an email alert (if requested).
• You can share your published article through social media.
• As the author, you retain free access (after accepting the Terms & Conditions of use, you can view your article).
• The corresponding author and co-authors can nominate up to ten colleagues to receive a publication alert and free online access to your article.

You can now order print copies of your article (instructions are sent at proofing stage).

Now is the time to start promoting your article. Find out how to do that here.

Measuring the impact of your work

Wiley also helps you measure the impact of your research through our specialist partnerships with Kudos and Altmetric.

Author Guidelines Updated 7 February 2017