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Author Guidelines

Submission Process

Submit manuscripts for consideration through our online editorial manager ( Create an account and follow the submission instructions within the editorial manager. Submissions should include a cover letter that explains why the manuscript is a good fit for the journal, states that authors agree to pay the article processing charges ($295 for up to 20 typeset pages, with a $20 charge per page thereafter) upon acceptance, and recommends at least two peer reviewers who are not former co-authors or from the same institution as the authors. Initial manuscript submissions may be in any reasonable format, but the finalized, post-review manuscript must be formatted as specified in the "Formatting Manuscript" section below.

All new submissions must:

  • be agreed to by all co-authors;
  • certify that research with vertebrate animals was performed in accordance with approved institutional guidelines;
  • certify that any research involving endangered species was performed in accordance with all applicable laws;
  • adhere to our code of ethics, including no plagiarism, fraud, or unauthorized use of data, as well as proper attribution for previously published research and intellectual property, and clearly stated conflicts of interest.
We do not accept previously published work, and by submitting your manuscript to us, you are agreeing it has not previously been published; any potential conflicts must be disclosed in your cover letter. If in doubt, you should supply a copy of the previous publication to the Editor in Chief. Authors are responsible for obtaining permission to reproduce previously published material, including tables and figures.

Journal Policies

Article Processing Charges: Our current article processing charges (APC) are $295 for manuscripts up to 20 typeset pages.  For longer manuscripts, there will be an additional charge of $20/page for each page over 20. (NOTE:  Reviewers who complete reviews by the specified deadlines will receive a credit of $25/review that can be applied toward APCs for future submissions.)

Copyright Policy: Copyright on any article is retained by the author(s).  Authors grant Illinois Natural History Survey Bulletin a license to publish the article and identify itself as the original publisher.  The article will be distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (CC BY 4.0) license.  Alternate licenses will be considered at the request of the author.

Data Policy: Authors must provide a data availability statement.  While it is understood that not all data can be made public, where possible, it is expected that supporting data will be made available via an appropriate data repository within a reasonable time of publication.  A registry of data repositories can be found at  Authors are responsible for fees charged by external data repositories.

Computer Code and Statistics: Authors must clearly explain the statistical procedures used in the any publication, and we strongly recommend providing any novel computer code or statistical analyses either as supplementary material or sharing via an appropriate repository.

Types of Manuscripts

  • Articles are succinct summaries of research in a traditional format.
  • Conceptual Reviews summarize the research in a particular area of, and provide new syntheses of data and new directions for the research field.
  • Monographs are longer works (typically greater than 20 typeset pages upon publication) that explore a topic in-depth.

Formatting Manuscript

Manuscript files should be in Microsoft Word (.doc or .docx) or WordPerfect (.wpd) formats. Tables should be included in the manuscript file, but can be uploaded separately as .doc, .xls, or .csv formats if needed. Figures and images should be uploaded as  .jpeg or .tif formats at 300 dpi. Supplementary material should be uploaded as .doc or .pdf, but can be other formats as needed.  The manuscript should be assembled in this order:
  • Title page
  • Abstract (no longer than 300 words) and keywords
  • Text (typically Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results, Discussion)
  • Acknowledgments
  • Literature cited
  • Tables (one table per page),
  • Figure legends (on separate page preceding the first figure)
  • Figures (must be in files uploaded separately, which are then appended as one figure per page)
  • Supplementary material (must be in files uploaded separately, which are then appended to the manuscript file) 
The manuscript text and literature cited must be double-spaced. Please use Times New Roman with an 11 point font for all aspects of the manuscript. Use a 1 inch margin on each side of the page, using 8.5 x 11 inch page size. Do not justify the right margin, add line numbers continuously throughout the manuscript, and add a page number in the footer on all manuscript pages.

Literature Cited

We follow the guidelines of the Ecological Society of America (their style can be used in reference manager software). Examples include:
Journal Article
Allen, M. L., C. C. Wilmers, L. M. Elbroch, J. M. Golla, and H. U. Wittmer. 2016. The importance of motivation, weapons and foul odors in driving encounter competition in carnivores. Ecology 97:1905–1912.
Burnham, K. P., and D. R. Anderson. 2002. Model selection and multimodel inference: a practical information-theoretic approach. Second edition. Springer-Verlag, New York, New York, USA
Book Chapter
Mosby, H. S. 1967. Population dynamics. Pages 113–136 in O. H. Hewitt, editor. The wild turkey and its management. The Wildlife Society, Washington, D.C., USA.
Schauber, E. M. 2000. Models of mast seeding and its ecological effects on gypsy moth populations and Lyme disease risk. Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Connecticut, New Haven, Connecticut.

Peer Review Process

The Editor in Chief will review the submission to ensure it meets the formatting guidelines, scope and quality of the journal, and if so forward to an associate/subject editor. The associate/subject editor will send the manuscript to at least two peer reviewers. The associate/subject editor will review the recommendations from the reviewers and make a recommendation to the Editor in Chief.  
Possible recommendations include:
Minor Revision
The manuscript will be published assuming the recommended revisions are performed.
Major Revision
The manuscript could make a valuable contribution but there are substantial problems that need to be addressed. These revised manuscripts often go back to the original reviewers for an additional round of revision.
Decline without Prejudice
The editors believe the manuscript has potential, but it requires extensive changes that may take a long time period to address. The manuscript can be resubmitted but will be considered a new manuscript upon submission.
Papers that have substantial problems will not be considered a good fit for the journal. These manuscripts are not eligible for resubmission.
For submissions that require revisions, the author should prepare three files for resubmission:
Response to Reviewer Comments
Explain how the author(s) have addressed the concerns/comments of the peer reviewers point by point. The responses should note the line numbers that correspond to each revision made in the Marked Manuscript.
Marked Manuscript
A version of original submission with all of the changes tracked.
Clean Manuscript
A version of the new manuscript with no tracked changes.
When a manuscript is accepted, it is then forwarded to the production team. The manuscript will be copy-edited and formatted for publication. The authors will be provided with page proofs, which the author(s) should return within 48 hours. The corrected manuscript will then be published with a DOI assigned by the journal.

Submission Preparation Checklist

All submissions must meet the following requirements.

  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines.

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