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Conservation Letters

Cover image for Vol. 10 Issue 4

Edited By: Editor-in-Chief, Edward T. Game; Senior Associate Editors, E.J. Milner-Gulland, Harini Nagendra and Mark W. Schwartz

Impact Factor: 7.02

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2016: 2/53 (Biodiversity Conservation)

Online ISSN: 1755-263X

Author Guidelines

Submission and handling of manuscripts

Submissions should be uploaded to our ScholarOne Manuscripts site: Upon submission, we ask that you provide separate files for your text, tables, figures and supporting information. Please provide your text in an editable format, figures will need to be at least 600 DPI. More detailed information on the submission of electronic artwork can be found at Ideally, all supporting information should be one all-inclusive PDF file, uploaded directly into ScholarOne Manuscripts. We encourage the submission of cover artwork.

Authors are requested to submit the names and emails of 3-5 potential referees working outside their home institution(s). Authors may also indicate referees they would prefer not to review the manuscript. Such suggestions will be regarded as a guide only and the Editor is under no obligation to follow them. Authors must suggest the Editor they believe is best placed to handle the manuscript, however, the Editor-in-Chief or Senior Associate Editor will select the most appropriate Editor to manage review of each manuscript.

Submissions to Conservation Letters must represent the independent work of the authors. In any case where potential overlap exists among papers submitted to other journals, authors must provide copies of the papers in question and explain in a cover letter how they present different results or differ substantially in their contribution.

The covering letter to the Editorial Office should succinctly describe why the enclosed work is novel, exciting and of general interest to a broad range of conservation researchers and/or policy makers. Please indicate as well the types of problems, interventions, or policies for which your findings are particularly suggestive. The covering letter must indicate that the enclosed work has not been published or accepted for publication, and is not under consideration for publication, in another journal or book, that its submission for publication has been approved by all relevant authors and institutions, and that all persons entitled to authorship have been so named. The submitting author must indicate in the cover letter that all authors have seen and agreed to the submitted version of the manuscript. Please address your covering letter to Editor-in-Chief, Edward T. Game.

The journal to which you are submitting your manuscript employs a plagiarism detection system. By submitting your manuscript to this journal you accept that your manuscript may be screened for plagiarism against previously published works.

Accepted manuscripts will be published online both as an Accepted Article and as Early View, unless otherwise requested by the authors. Accepted Article publication means that the accepted version of your article will be posted online within 48 hours of acceptance. For this reason, if you will be doing press for your article that requires an embargoed release, we request that you ask for your article to be held from Accepted Articles. Please do so prior to the article being accepted and exported to production. Embargoed releases cannot be used when articles are already in the public domain. To request that your article be held from AA, please contact Managing Editor Katie Simmons (

Types of articles
Our aim at Conservation Letters is to publish science that is policy and practice relevant. This is the case for all of the manuscript categories below. For a guide to how we interpret policy relevance at Conservation Letters see this editorial .

Reviews provide synthetic overviews of emerging subjects that merit urgent attention or succinct syntheses of important topics that are rarely encountered in mainstream literature. Reviews may be up to 5000 words in length and may contain up to 60 references. Themes should be of global importance, and present findings and conclusions relevant to policy-makers and practitioners in the fields of conservation and human well-being.

Letters detail novel findings of cutting-edge research covering topics of global importance with high relevance for conservation practice and/or policy. The policy relevance of these studies should be clearly identified and discussed. Inter- and transdisciplinary studies are particularly sought. Accordingly, the following types of studies will not be considered: uni-disciplinary social, biological or ecological studies, gap analyses, species descriptions, biogeographical studies, amongst others. Letters should be no more than 3000 words in length (excluding references, table and figure legends, and online Supporting Information) and contain no more than 6 figures and/or tables and 40 references.

Policy Perspectives are essays for a general audience covering a diversity of topics important to decision-making, planning and implementation of activities related to conservation and human well-being. Policy Perspectives may be up to 3000 words in length and should contain no more than 5 figures and/or tables. To ensure appeal to the broad readership of the journal, less than 30 references should be cited. Detailed information regarding, for example, research methods, should be included as online Supporting Information.

Correspondence articles provide readers an opportunity to raise substantive concerns regarding articles previously published in the journal. Correspondence articles should be submitted within six months of the final (Early View) publication of the article receiving comment. Correspondence articles should comprise no more than 500 words and 6 cited references. Figures and tables will not be published, but can be included as online Supporting Information.

Viewpoint articles are typically invited by the Editor-in-Chief, and aim to raise awareness and stimulate debate. They offer personal perspectives and insights into topical or emerging issues of broad interest that are potentially important for advancing thinking around and/or improving the effectiveness of policy, practice and research relevant to conservation and human well-being. Viewpoint articles are limited to 1000 words and are typically single authored with very few or no references, figures or tables.

Review Process

All manuscripts are assessed initially by the Editor in Chief or a Senior Associate Editor. If the Editor in Chief or Senior Associate Editor determines the manuscript topic is appropriate for the journal and meets standards of content and presentation, then the manuscript is assigned to a member of the Editorial Board with expertise in the manuscript’s topic. If the Editor deems the manuscript is of sufficient quality and novelty, she or he will request reviews. The number of reviews required is at the discretion of the Editor but is typically 2-3. Once reviews have been received, the Editor summarizes reviewer points, provides an assessment, and makes a recommendation (acceptance, some degree of revision, or rejection) to the Editor in Chief or Senior Associate Editor. Revised manuscripts are generally sent back to an Editor for assessment, who may then initiate another round of review.

Decision times

We aim to make all editorial decisions within 6 weeks of manuscript receipt. Please note that the above decision times apply to manuscripts once all the required material (text, figures, cover letter, novelty statement, manuscripts submitted or ’in press’) has been received by the Editorial Office. Accepted manuscripts of the recommended length and style will usually be published within 3 weeks of receipt of corrected proofs.


Peer review is not perfect; sometimes we will make mistakes. If you believe that a serious error has been made in reaching a decision on your manuscript, you can send an appeal to Appeals should include a detailed justification of why you believe an error has been made in reaching a decision on your manuscript, AND how you can adequately address any other specific criticisms raised by the Editor or Reviewers. For decisions originally made by a Senior Associate Editor, all appeals will be handled by the Editor-in-Chief, Edward T Game. For decisions originally made the Editor-in-Chief, appeals will be handled by a Senior Associate Editor. Appeals are given lower priority than manuscripts still under consideration but the Editor handling your appeal will endeavour to contact you within 2 weeks to advise on whether the manuscript will be reconsidered.

Presentation of manuscripts

Conservation Letters places great emphasis on its prompt and accurate reviews of submitted manuscripts. This requires that manuscripts be concise and carefully prepared: they must be complete, with all reporting of methods, results and citations fully checked and in final form. Figures and tables must be clear and well presented. All pages and lines should be numbered consecutively from beginning to end of document. Manuscripts judged to be too hastily or poorly prepared will be returned to authors for resubmission. The correct presentation of manuscripts is detailed below.
Manuscripts should be written in clear, concise and grammatically correct English. Authors for whom English is a second language should therefore have their manuscript corrected by a native English speaker prior to submission where necessary. This may be on an informal basis through a colleague or acquaintance, or on a professional basis through a copy-editing service. To assist authors who wish to use a professional copy-editor, a list of independent suppliers of editing services can be found at language.asp. All services are paid for and arranged by the author and, if prior to acceptance, use of one of these services does not guarantee acceptance or preferential treatment.

Title page

The title page contains the article title, full name(s) of all author(s), affiliation(s), e-mail address(es) of all author(s), a short running title (abbreviated form of title) of less than 45 characters including spaces, up to 10 keywords listed alphabetically for indexing purposes, the type of article, the number of words in the abstract and in the manuscript as a whole, the number of references, the number of figures and tables, and the name and complete mailing address (including telephone and fax numbers and e-mail address) of the person to whom correspondence should be sent. It is essential that the keywords be chosen carefully to assist in the choice of appropriate editors and referees. Please refrain from using question marks in your title.

Abstract page

The abstract page should contain a short summary not exceeding 150 words for Letters and 200 words for Reviews and Policy Perspectives.

Main text

(1) Introduction. The Introduction should summarize briefly the background and aims, and end with a brief statement of what has been achieved by the work.

(2) Methods. This section should contain sufficient detail so that all procedures can be repeated (in conjunction with cited references). Where specific equipment and materials are named, the manufacturer’s name, city and country should be given (generally in parentheses after first mention).

(3) Results. The Results section should present the experiments that support the conclusions to be drawn later in the Discussion. The Results section should conform to a high standard of rigour. Extended lines of inference, arguments or speculations should not be placed in the Results.

(4) Discussion. The Discussion section should be separate from the Results section. It allows authors to propose their interpretation of the results, and to suggest what they mean in a wider context. It should end with a clear statement of the main conclusions of the research, and a clear explanation of their importance and relevance to applied conservation and/or policy.

(5) Acknowledgements. Acknowledgements of financial or institutional support should be brief (100 words maximum). Authors are expected to disclose any potential conflicts of interest, financial or otherwise, that a reasonable person could construe as possibly influencing the objectivity of the report. Please include this statement in the Acknowledgement section. The absence of any statement is presumed to mean that there is nothing to disclose.

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

EndNote reference styles can be searched for here:

Reference Manager reference styles can be searched for here:

References to papers by one or two authors in the text should be in full, e.g. (Able & Charles 1986). If the number of authors exceeds two, they should always be abbreviated thus: (Frank et al. 1986). When different groups of authors with the same first author and date occur, they should be cited thus: (James et al. 1986a, b). References should be listed in chronological order in the text, e.g. (Lowe et al. 1986; Able et al. 1997). At the end of the paper, references should be listed in alphabetical order by the first author or editor (for edited books). Names and initials of all authors, year of publication, the full titles of papers, chapters and books, the abbreviated journal titles (standard abbreviations please see, volumes and inclusive pagination should be provided. Examples of reference style are given below:

Ferris, C., King, R.A. & Gray, A.J. (1997). Molecular evidence for the maternal parentage in the hybrid origin of Spartina anglica C.E. Hubbard. Mol. Ecol., 6, 185-187.

Begon, M., Harper, J. & Townsend, C. (1996). Ecology: individuals, populations and communities. 3rd edn. Blackwell Publishing, Oxford.

Milligan, B. (1992). Plant DNA isolation. In: Molecular genetic analysis of populations: a practical approach (ed. Hoelzel, A.R.). IRL Press, Oxford, pp. 59-88.

References to a paper ’in press’ are permissible provided that it has been accepted for publication (acceptance date and documentary evidence must be provided) and should appear as follows:

V´azquez, D.P. & Simberloff, D. (2003). Changes in interaction biodiversity induced by an introduced ungulate. Ecol. Lett., in press.

If a paper ’in press’ has been allocated a Digital Object Identifier (DOI), then cite this with the paper as follows:

V´azquez, D.P. & Simberloff, D. (2003). Changes in interaction biodiversity induced by an introduced ungulate. Ecol. Lett., doi:10.1046/j.1461-0248.2003.00534.x

A reference to ’unpublished work’ should be accompanied by the names of all persons concerned; any person cited as the source of a ’personal communication’ must have approved the reference; both of these types of citation are permitted in the text only, not in the list of references. However, the number of incidences of this sort of referencing should be kept to an absolute minimum. The use of ’in preparation’ or ’submitted for publication’ is not permitted. Please double-space references.

References to material available on the World Wide Web are acceptable, but only if the information is available on an official site and without charge to readers. Authors may provide electronic copies of the cited material for inclusion on the Conservation Letters homepage at the discretion of the Editors. The format for citations is as follows:

Beckleheimer, J. (1994) How do you cite URL’s in a bibliography? Available from Accessed 10 October 2007.



Please do not include a question mark in the title of your manuscript. Manscripts will be returned to authors to update title by the editorial office.


Files should be double-spaced with no hyphenation or automatic wordwrap (and no hard returns within paragraphs). Please type your text consistently, e.g. take care to distinguish between “1” (one) and “l” (lowercase L), and “0” (zero) and “O” (uppercase o), etc.


Tables should be cited consecutively in the text and numbered with Arabic numerals (Table 1, Table 2, etc.). Each table should be titled and typed double-spaced on a separate sheet. Units must be clearly indicated for each of the entries in the table. Footnotes to tables should be identified by the symbols * † ‡ § ¶(in that order) and placed at the bottom of the table. No vertical rules should be used. Please double-space tables.


Figures should be cited consecutively in the text by Arabic numerals (Fig. 1, Fig. 2, etc.) and should be in a separate file(s). Legends should be typed double-spaced and grouped at the end of the paper. Line and combination figures should preferably be submitted in vector graphics format (e.g., either embedded as vector graphics in a Word document or saved separately in PDF or EPS format). If this is not possible, they should be saved separately as pixel-based graphics at 600 DPI at the required print size, and they should be saved in TIF (not JPG) format or embedded as such in Word. Photographic figures should be saved at 300 DPI in TIF format, or JPG format with low compression. Figures should be drawn/submitted at their smallest practicable size (to fit a single column (82 mm), two-thirds page width (110 mm) or full page width (173 mm)). Over-sized figures will be reduced by the Production Editor. If figures are drawn larger than reproduction size, component parts such as symbols and text must be large enough to allow for the necessary reduction. For full instructions on preparing your figures, see our Electronic Artwork Information for Authors page.

Scientific names

Give the Latin names of each species in full, together with the authority for its name, at first mention in the main text. If there are many species, cite a flora or checklist which may be consulted for authorities instead of listing them in the text. Do not give authorities for species cited from published references. Give priority to scientific names in the text (with colloquial names in parentheses, if desired).

Units and symbols

Authors are requested to use the International System of Units (S.I.) where possible for all measurements (see Quantities, Units and Symbols, 2nd edn, 1975, The Royal Society (London). Note that mathematical expressions should contain symbols, not abbreviations. If the paper contains many symbols, it is recommended that they should be defined as early in the text as possible, or within a subsection of the Materials and Methods section.

Transparency and Openness Promotion Guidelines

Conservation Letters is a signatory to the Transparency and Openness Promotion Guidelines. It is the policy of Conservation Letters that authors should, in the acknowledgements, indicate whether the data and program code used in the analyses, will or will not be made available to any researcher for purposes of reproducing the results or replicating the procedure, and where that material will be available. All data and program code that support the results of the paper should be recognized as original intellectual contributions and afforded recognition through citation. References for data sets and program code should include a persistent identifier, such as a Digital Object Identifier (DOI). Persistent identifiers ensure future access to unique published digital objects, such as a text or data set. Persistent identifiers are assigned to data sets by digital archives.

Cover photos

Authors are encouraged to submit cover photos when their paper is accepted for publication. Initially, these can be sent to the Editorial Office as low to medium resolution JPG files, but if selected a high resolution file (300 d.p.i. at reproduction size) is required by the Production Editor for printing. Only images in portrait orientation can be accommodated (c. 12 x 17 cm). Conservation Letters is particularly interested in images that depict human interactions with the environment. Submitted photographs should exhibit good contrast and color balance, and with the main subject matter in sharp focus. Images will be printed using the CMYK color palette, and if possible RGB color images should be converted and color balanced before submission.

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.

Open Access Agreement

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. The following license agreement is available: Creative Commons Attribution License OAA To preview the terms and conditions of this open access agreement, please visit

Article Publication Charges

Conservation Letters is a fully open access journal. You or your funder will be required to pay an article publication charge of $1,850 / £1,160 / €1,375 on acceptance. Not sure if payment for your article could be covered by your institution or funding agency? Use our Institute/Funder Policy Finder tool to check:

Members of the Society for Conservation Biology (SCB) receive a 20% discount to publish in Conservation Letters. Please email for the discount code.

Editorial Waivers
It is Conservation Letters policy that ability to pay the Article Publication Charge (APC) should not be a barrier to the publication of important science. Authors without research grants or access to APC funding may request an editorial waiver to be granted at the discretion of the Editor-in-Chief. To request an editorial waiver, please contact Waiver requests must be submitted via email at the time of submission, prior to peer-review.

Geographical Waivers
Waivers will automatically be granted to corresponding authors from the Wiley Open Access Waiver Country List. No further information is required.

PubMed Central (PMC)

PubMed Central (PMC) is created by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) and is a digital archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature. It is a full text database, which gives readers free access to the full text version of articles. Wiley Open Access journals will deposit all articles into PMC upon publication of an online issue, usually on a monthly basis. The final published versions of the articles are sent to PMC.

Accepted Articles

Accepted Articles have been accepted for publication and undergone full peer review but have not been through the copyediting, typesetting, pagination, and proofreading process. Accepted Articles are published online a few days after final acceptance, appear in PDF format only (without the accompanying full-text HTML), and are given a Digital Object Identifier (DOI), which allows them to be cited and tracked. The DOI remains unique to a given article in perpetuity. More information about DOIs can be found online at Given that Accepted Articles are not considered to be final, please note that changes will be made to an article after Accepted Article online publication, which may lead to differences between this version and the Version of Record. The Accepted Articles service has been designed to ensure the earliest possible circulation of research papers after acceptance. Given that copyright licensing is a condition of publication, a completed copyright form is required before a manuscript can be processed as an Accepted Article.

Accepted Articles will be indexed by PubMed; therefore the submitting author must carefully check the names and affiliations of all authors provided in the cover page of the manuscript, as it will not be possible to alter these once a paper is made available online in Accepted Article format. Subsequently the final copyedited and proofed articles will appear as Early View articles in a matter of weeks, and, subsequently, in an issue on Wiley Online Library. The link to the article in PubMed will automatically be updated.

Proofs and offprints

Proofs will be sent as PDF files to the corresponding author. Only corrections and essential changes may be made at this stage. Authors may be charged for more extensive alterations. To avoid delay in publication, corrected proofs must be returned to the publisher within 48 hours of receipt. The Editors reserve the right to make minor modifications to manuscripts that do not conform to accepted standards. Such alterations will always be submitted to the authors for approval at the proof stage. A PDF file of the published article will be provided free of charge to the corresponding author. Paper offprints may be purchased if ordered on the form sent with the proofs.

Early View publication

Articles in Conservation Letters will be published individually online ahead of issue compilation. Early View articles consist of full text that has been reviewed, revised and edited for publication, with the author’s final corrections incorporated. Because articles are in final form, no changes can be made after online publication. Early View articles are citable by a Digital Object Identifier (DOI); following the articles incorporation into an issue, the DOI remains valid and can continue to be used to cite and access the article. More information about DOIs can be found at

Registration of sequences

DNA sequences published in Conservation Letters should be deposited in the EMBL/GenBank/DDJB Nucleotide Sequence Databases. An accession number for each sequence must be included in the manuscript before publication.

Additional material

Supporting Information can be a useful way for an author to include important but ancillary information with the online version of an article. Examples of Supporting Information include additional tables, data sets, figures, movie files, audio clips, 3D structures, and other related nonessential multimedia files. Supporting Information should be cited within the article text, and a descriptive legend should be included. It is published as supplied by the author, and a proof is not made available prior to publication; for these reasons, authors should provide any Supporting Information in the desired final format.

For further information on recommended file types and requirements for submission, please visit:

Archive policy

Unless specifically requested, the Publisher will dispose of all electronic material submitted 2 months after publication. If you require the return of any material submitted, please inform the editorial office or the production editor as soon as possible.