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1 March 2018 Instructions for Contributors to Waterbirds

Waterbirds is an international scientific journal of the Waterbird Society. The journal is published four times a year (March, June, September and December) and specializes in the biology, abundance, ecology, management and conservation of all waterbird species living in marine, estuarine and freshwater habitats. Waterbirds welcomes submission of scientific articles and notes containing the results of original studies worldwide, unsolicited critical commentary and reviews of appropriate topics. With the modifications noted below, Waterbirds follows the conventions set out in Scientific Style and Format: The CSE Manual for Authors, Editors and Publishers ISBN 0-9779665-0-X.


Manuscripts submitted for consideration should be sent to: Stephanie L. Jones, Editor of Waterbirds, 403 Deer Road, Evergreen, CO, 80439, USA; Phone: 303-547-0314; Email: Electronic submissions should be sent as a Microsoft Word file to editor.waterbirds@gmail. com with a copy to the Associate Editor, Sandra L. MacPherson, at sandywaterbirds®

Papers submitted to Waterbirds should not currently be submitted to, or be under consideration by, any other journal. Papers submitted should have already obtained any agency permissions needed to publish the work. They should present new and unpublished information. Normally, papers will be subject to peer review, but the Editor reserves the right to reject papers not presented in the style used by the journal or not considered suitable for the journal. The Editor's decision on submitted papers is final. Papers submitted with more than one author should have been read and approved by all of the authors before submission. Submissions should closely follow these Instructions for Contributors.

Please include the entire manuscript (text, tables, figures) in a single Microsoft Word file. Articles are usually longer papers, while Notes are short communications containing fewer than 3,000 words in the text and references. The Editor will make the final decision between the two categories. The journal cannot publish monograph-length submissions. From time to time, the Waterbird Society publishes the scientific papers from a special meeting or conference held as part of a symposium. In this case, it will be necessary for the group organizing the special meeting or conference to provide a Subject Editor and funds to cover the cost of the special publication. Books for review should be sent to the Book Review Editor, Dr. M. Clay Green, at


Except where noted below, text and headings shall be in 12 point font, double-spaced, and non-justified on A4 (21 × 30 cm) (8.5 × 11 inch) paper. Provide at least 2.5-cm (1-inch) margins on all sides (without printed borders). Number the lines continuously throughout all sections, including Figure Captions and Tables. A single space should be used after the concluding punctuation of a sentence. All major headings (e.g., METHODS, RESULTS, DISCUSSION, ACKNOWLEDGMENTS, and LITERATURE CITED) should be in upper case, centered and not in bold type. First order sub-headings are in lower case, left justified, and with first letter of major words capitalized. Second order subheadings should be in italics and entered on the first line of text, indented, and followed by a period. Do not use an “Introduction” heading.

Articles should be partitioned into headings and sections arranged in the following order: Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, Acknowledgments, Literature Cited, Tables, Figure Captions, Figures, and Appendices (if necessary). Use only informative and standard sub-headings. A Study Area sub-heading should be used, and it should be under Methods. No sub-headings should be included in the Discussion.

Page 1: This page should carry the title of the paper (capitalize first letter of each major word, include scientific names of any species mentioned, center, put in 14 point bold font), followed by the names of all the authors (center, format in small caps, put in 12 point font) and their complete postal addresses (center, put in 12 point font) on separate lines. The e-mail address of the corresponding author should be included below the address as “Corresponding author; E-mail: xxxx@xxx.” The top left corner should contain the words “Send proof to:” followed by the name and complete postal address, phone number, and e-mail of the corresponding author.

Page 2: This page should contain the Abstract, a list of up to 10 key words (in alphabetical order), and a suggested running head in all capital letters of less than 30 characters, and should not exceed one page in length. The Abstract should be short (less then 200 words), give the main results of the study, and present quantified results rather than general statements. Do not use abbreviations or acronyms in the Abstract, and write in the passive voice. The Abstract and Key words headings should be in bold type and appear on the first line of the text, indented, and followed by a period and em-dash.

Page 3 and on: This page should start with the Introduction (without the heading) and then continue with each section in turn. Indent the first line of all paragraphs.

Write in the active voice and use U.S. English spelling throughout the manuscript, except for foreign literature citations. Use real italics, not underlines, and real superscripts and subscripts, not raised or lowered characters. Do not use four-letter “Bander” Codes. Minimize use of nonstandard abbreviations or acronyms that must be memorized by the reader to follow your paper.

No URLs should be given in the body of the text. URLs should only be given for publications that are primarily only available on the internet.

The Discussion should be brief. The longer the Discussion is, the fewer people who will read it. Do not present results in the Discussion.


Each Table should be on a separate page, following the Literature Cited, and headed with a full caption in bold type that allows the Table to stand alone from the main body of the paper. Supplementary information should be kept to a minimum. Tables should be numbered sequentially starting with Table 1, 2, 3, etc.


Captions to all Figures should be in bold type and included together on a separate page, with each caption giving a comprehensive explanation of the figure and including the name of the species if the data relate to one or only a few species. Each Figure should be labeled and on a separate page following the page containing the Figure captions. Figures should be numbered sequentially starting with Figure 1, 2, 3, etc. Cite Figures as Fig. in the text.

Figures should be submitted in the manuscript in Word. However, final versions of figure files required for publication will only be accepted in picture formats: TIFF, JPEG, and similar and not embedded in Microsoft Word, Excel or Powerpoint. The final figures should be high resolution at 300 dpi for half tones and 600 dpi for line art. Figures should be prepared at about twice the linear dimensions at which they will be published; hence, very thin lines should be avoided. Figure size and shape should be suitable for fitting in the column or page format of the journal. Lettering should be a uniform size and font throughout and large enough to allow an appreciable reduction. Review recent Waterbirds issues for examples of publishable figures.

Figures should be produced using high quality artwork and in electronic form. Avoid background coloration, and use highly contrasting fills in histograms and pie charts like black, white and gray instead of complex fill patterns. The axes captions on graphs should be in lower case except for the first letter of the first word or in the case of proper names. Both axes labels and scale numbers should be large enough to be clear when reduced to one column width.


Monochrome photographs will be accepted if they contribute substantially to the comprehension of the article. They should be of sharp focus and good contrast. Color photographs will be limited and will be accepted only if the author pays the additional costs of preparation and printing.


Units of measurement, derived units, and related symbols should conform to the International System of Units (SI) (e.g., meter m, kilogram kg, kelvin K), except as noted below.

Time and Date

Use a 24-hour time system (assumed to be local time unless otherwise stated) and a continental date system. Times should retain the colon (e.g., 16:20 hr or 08:00 hr). Give dates as day month year in continental date system (e.g., 20 September 1968) and year ranges as 1989–1991, not 1989–91. Abbreviate seconds (sec), minutes (min), and hours (hr), but not day, week, month, or year. Names of months may be abbreviated in figures or long tables.

Coordinates (Location)

Degrees Minutes Seconds: 48° 31′ 40.59″ N, 70° 14′ 16.28″ W.


In the text, words should be used for integers up to and including nine, except for measurements, such as 5 km (but nine herons). Units of time (e.g., seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years) are units of measurement. Whole numbers should contain commas where appropriate (e.g., 12,426 or 1,000).

Quantitative and Statistical Results

We recognize the increasing scope of statistical treatments of data that range among frequentist, information theoretic, and Bayesian approaches. However, the approach of rejecting trivial null hypotheses usually provides little insight or support for the alternate hypothesis unless conducted in a strict experimental framework. Quantitative results should be accompanied by descriptions of appropriate statistical methods; use the following symbol and abbreviation conventions:


Sample size of the data


Predicted probability or proportion; rounded to no more than three decimal places; use P < 0.001 as the smallest P-value


Sample arithmetic mean


Sample standard deviation


Sample standard error of the mean


Chi-square test statistic, where subscript a = degrees of freedom


Coefficient of variation


Degrees of freedom


t statistic; with subscript a = degrees of freedom; specify independent or paired t-test and two-tailed or one-tailed test


F test statistic; with subscripts a, b = appropriate degrees of freedom



U, U1

Mann-Whitney test statistics


Sample correlation coefficient


Coefficient of determination


Multiple correlation coefficient


Coefficient of multiple determination


Null hypothesis


Alternative hypothesis


Akaike's Information Criterion


Small sample, AIC


Number of parameters (Akaike)


Akaike weight for model i


Parameter estimates (Akaike)

When examining relationships between two variables, the slope of the regression and its standard error are often biologically important and may be more meaningful than a correlation coefficient alone; consideration should be given to presenting the slope, P-value, SE and r. The limitations of parametric, non-parametric and information-theoretic based statistical tests should be considered in selecting and reporting on the respective tests.


Common (vernacular) names of animals and plants should be used whenever possible (capitalizing the first letter of each name or non-hyphenated part of a name only for birds, e.g., Gull-billed Tern) and the scientific name should be given in italics (e.g., Coturnicops noveboracensis) in the title, in the Abstract, and after the first mention of each species in the main text. Lower case should be used for group names (e.g., grebes, eiders, gulls). A capital should be used for the first letter of all proper taxa above the species level, but not for Anglicized names (e.g., Mollusca, molluscs). Scientific and English names of birds should follow the latest AOU Check-list of North American Birds and supplements or an authoritative source for other regions. This includes all references, tables, and figures.


Ethics Statements and Guidelines: In the Acknowledgments section, provide full details of all permits and animal care certificates obtained to legally capture and handle birds. Also, include a statement that your methods meet all ethical guidelines for the use of wild birds in research, as stipulated by the standards and policies of your home country and area of research. For research conducted in the USA, indicate this by including the following sentence in the Acknowledgments section: “All applicable ethical guidelines for the use of birds in research have been followed, including those presented in the Ornithological Council's “Guidelines to the Use of Wild Birds in Research.” You may want to cite the following reference (Fair et al. 2010) after this statement and include the following reference in the Literature Cited section, if applicable:

Fair, J., E. Paul and J. Jones (Eds.). 2010. Guidelines to the use of wild birds in research. Ornithological Council, Washington, D.C.


In the text, literature with one or two authors should be cited by surname and year (e.g., Blake 1977; Jones and Blake 1982). Literature with three or more authors should be cited by the surname of the first author followed by et al. and the year (e.g., Parnell et al. 2001). Multiple citations should be separated by a semicolon and listed in chronological order (Gochfeld and Burger 1996; Bridge et al. 2005).

Cite references in the Literature Cited section in alphabetical order according to the authors' surnames. List citations by number of authors, with single authorship first. Next, list citations by date after grouping alphabetically by first author and number of authors. For example, in the Literature Cited the order would be: Sargeant 2003; Sargeant and Raveling 1992; Sargeant and Raveling 2007; Sargeant and Jones 2011a, 2011b; Sargeant et al. 2004; Sargeant et al. 2007. Do not abbreviate names of publications. Spell out all State and Province names except D.C. In the Literature Cited, use the following formats.

Scientific journal: give names of all authors with initials, year of publication, title of the article, name of the journal in full, followed by the volume number and the first and last page of the article.

Ankney, G. D. and R. T. Alisauskas. 1991. The use of nutrients by breeding waterfowl. Proceedings of the International Ornithological Congress 20: 2170–2176.

Bridge, E. S., A. W. Jones and A. J. Baker. 2005. A phylogenetic framework for the terns (Sternini) inferred from mtDNA sequences: implications for taxonomy and plumage evolution. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 35: 459–469.

Cite Studies in Avian Biology and Ornithological Monographs as journal articles.

Takekawa, J. E., H. R. Carter and T. E. Harvey. 1990. Decline of the Common Murre in central California. Studies in Avian Biology 14: 149–163.

Book: give names of all authors with initials, year of publication, title, (editors if multiple contributions), publisher, and place of publication.

American Ornithologists' Union. 1998. Check-list of North American birds, 7th ed. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C.

Nakicenovic, N. and R. Swart (Eds.). 2000. Emissions scenarios: a special report of Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, U.K.

Book chapter: give names of all authors with initials, year of publication, title, (editors if multiple contributions), publisher, and place of publication.

Chardine, J. W., R. D. Morris, J. F. Parnell and J. Pierce. 2000. Status and conservation priorities for Laughing Gulls, Gull-billed Terns, Royal Terns and Bridled Terns in the West Indies. Pages 65–79 in Status and Conservation of West Indian Seabirds (E. A. Schreiber and D. S. Lee, Eds.). Society of Caribbean Ornithology Special Publication No. 1, Ruston, Louisiana.

Report, thesis or dissertation: give names of all authors with initials, year of publication, title, publisher, and place of publication.

Master, T. L. 1989. The influence of prey and habitat characteristics on predator foraging success and strategies: a look at Snowy Egrets (Egretta thula) and their prey in salt marsh pannes. Ph.D. Dissertation, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Obernuefemann, K. P. 2007. Assessing the effects of scale and habitat management on residency and movement rates of Semipalmated Sandpipers at the Tom Yawkey Wildlife Center, South Carolina. M.S. Thesis, North Carolina State University, Raleigh.

Unpublished work (e.g., unpublished reports) should be indicated as such. These works should be used sparingly, as access to them may be difficult and, in most cases, the results have not been subject to peer review. Use pers. commun., unpubl. data or pers. obs. (e.g., S. L. Jones, pers. commun.) only when no other source is available. No URLs should be given for publications, except for publications that are primarily only available on the internet.

Molina, K. C. 2005. The breeding of terns and skimmers at the Salton Sea, 2005. Unpublished report, U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, Sonny Bono Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge, Calipatria, California.

The Birds of North America account: give names of all authors with initials, year of publication, volume, publisher, and place of publication.

Dugger, B. D. and K. M. Dugger. 2002. Long-billed Curlew (Numenius americanus). No. 628 in The Birds of North America (A. Poole and F. Gill, Eds.). Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C.

Thompson, B. C., J. A. Jackson, J. Burger, L. A. Hill, E. M. Kirsch and J. L. Atwood. 1997. Least Tern (Sternula antillarum), v. 2.0. In The Birds of North America (P. G. Rodewald, Ed.). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York,, accessed 28 December 2017.

Handbook of Birds of the World and Western Palearctic: give names of all authors with initials, year of publication, volume, publisher, and place of publication.

Orta, J. 1992. Family Phaethontidae. Pages 280–289 in Handbook of the Birds of the World, vol. I: Ostrich to Ducks (J. del Hoyo, A. Elliot and J. Sargatal, Eds.). Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.

Cramp, S., K. E. L. Simmons, D. Brooks, N. Collar, E. Dunn, R. Gillmor, P. Hollom, R. Hudson, E. Nicholson and M. Ogilvie (Eds.). 1985. Handbook of the birds of Europe, the Middle East and North Africa: the birds of the Western Palearctic, vol. III: waders to gulls. Oxford University Press, Oxford, U.K.

Statistical software programs.

R Development Core Team. 2012. R: a language and environment for statistical computing v. 2.14.3. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna, Austria., accessed 17 November 2012.

SAS Institute, Inc. 2008. SAS statistical software v. 9.2. SAS Institute, Inc., Cary, North Carolina.

Internet article: give names of all authors with initials, year of publication, html address, and date accessed. Do not make the URL a hyperlink.

State of Utah. 2001. Utah automated geographic reference center. Salt Lake City, Utah,, accessed 9 January 2014.

For publications with an organization identified as the author, do not use acronyms or initials for the name of the organization, but instead spell it out.

Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC). 2013. COSEWIC assessment and status report on the Buff-breasted Sandpiper Tryngites subruficollis in Canada. Environment Canada, Canadian Wildlife Service, Ottawa, Ontario, cfm?documentID=2456, accessed 9 January 2014.



Upon manuscript submission, authors are requested to identify three potential reviewers and provide their names and e-mail addresses. Revisions to manuscripts should be completed and returned to the Editor within 90 days. Revised manuscripts returned after this period of time may be treated as new submissions. In general, papers will be published in order of acceptance; shorter papers may be published more rapidly. Upon acceptance of a paper for publication, a complete electronic copy of the manuscript in a single Microsoft Word file should be submitted to the Editor by e-mail. The date of submission and acceptance will appear on all manuscripts.


Authors will be sent proofs of their papers prior to publication. Proofs should be returned to the Editor by E-mail within 3 days of receipt. The accepted manuscript is assumed to be correct in all respects; changes to the proofs that differ from the information in the accepted manuscript will be charged to the authors at $2 per printed line changed, unless previously agreed upon with the Editor. Errors attributed to the Editor or Printer and the updating of papers originally quoted as “in press” will not be charged. Please check all tables and figures carefully.


Page charge rates are currently $90.00 US/page for members and $100.00 US/ page for non-members. The conversion from manuscript to published pages is approximately x 0.35.

Contributors are invited to support the journal through personal and institutional memberships. Authors are encouraged to join the Waterbird Society (and join in its activities) if not already members. Publication in Waterbirds is not dependent upon ability to pay page charges; if authors are unable to arrange for payment, the Treasurer can waive the charges upon request. Authors will be billed by the Treasurer of the Waterbird Society for the cost of publication following the printing of an issue. Authors are encouraged to pay the amount billed if institutional or grant funds are available to do so.

"Instructions for Contributors to Waterbirds," Waterbirds 41(1), 103-108, (1 March 2018).
Published: 1 March 2018
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