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Guidelines for authors--The Victorian Naturalist.

December 2019

The Victorian Naturalist welcomes the submission of papers presenting original and significant research. When preparing a paper for publication, please follow the journal style as closely as possible.

Submission of a manuscript will be taken to mean that the material has not been published, nor is being considered for publication, elsewhere, and that all authors agree to its submission.

Authors may submit material in the form of Research Reports, Contributions, Naturalist Notes, Letters to the Editor and Book Reviews. All Research Reports and Contributions are peer reviewed by external referees. A Research Report records the results of a structured study that employs methods and analyses designed to answer a question. It is written in the third person, and in a form that includes an abstract, introduction, methods, results and discussion. A Contribution answers a question through research, which is not necessarily new, e.g. it could be a literature review used to provide the answer, or make a comparison. The scope of a contribution is broad, in order to encourage material on a wide range of topics and in a range of styles. This allows inclusion of material that makes a contribution to our knowledge of natural history but for which the traditional format of scientific papers is not appropriate. Symposia papers are the published form of papers presented at FNCV symposia and will be reviewed inhouse. Naturalist Notes are generally short, personal accounts of observations made in the field by anyone with an interest in natural history. These notes also may include reports on excursions and talks, where appropriate, or comment on matters relating to natural history. Letters to the Editor must be no longer than 500 words. Book Reviews are usually commissioned, but the editors also welcome enquiries from potential reviewers.

Guidelines for presentation of papers

If submitting by post, three copies of the manuscript should be provided, each including all tables and copies of figures. If submitting by email, only a single copy is necessary. Original artwork and photos can be withheld by the author until acceptance of the manuscript. Manuscripts should be typed, double spaced with wide margins and pages numbered. Please indicate the telephone number and email address, if available, of the author who is to receive correspondence. Submission of manuscripts should be accompanied by a covering letter.

The title should be concise, interesting and informative and not stated as a question.

Research Reports and Contributions must be accompanied by an abstract of not more than 150 words. The abstract should state the scope of the work, give the principal findings and be sufficiently complete for use by abstracting services.

Keywords are included following the abstract in Contributions and Research Reports. A maximum of five terms will be used.

References are cited chronologically in the text by author and date. All references in the text must be listed at the end of the paper in alphabetical order. Entries in this list must correspond to references in the text.

An electronic version and one hard copy of the manuscript are required upon resubmission after referees' comments have been incorporated. Documents should be in Microsoft Word. The bibliographic software 'EndNote' should NOT be used.


The following abbreviations should be used in the manuscript where appropriate (italicised as indicated): et al.; unpubl. data; pers. obs.; pers. comm. (each followed by a date as appropriate); 'subsp.' for subspecies.


The International System of Units (SI units) should be used for exact measurement of physical quantities.

Figures and Tables

All illustrations (including photographs) are considered as figures and will be laid out to fit the width of a page (123 mm) or a column (59.5 mm). It is important that the legend is clearly visible at these sizes. Photographs should be of a sufficiently high quality and contrast to reproduce clearly. They may be colour slides or colour or black-and-white prints, or digital images. Line drawings, maps and graphs may be computer-generated or in black Indian Ink on stout white or tracing paper. The figure number and the paper's title should be written on the back of each figure in pencil. If a hand-drawn figure is scanned it must be done at a minimum resolution of 300 dpi.

Computer-generated figures should be submitted as high quality TIFF, encapsulated postscript (EPS) or high quality JPG files scanned at 300 dpi resolution or more, separately on disc and not embedded into a MS Word document. Low-resolution JPG files will not be accepted.

Tables must fit into 59.5 mm or 123 mm. If using a table editor, such as that in MS Word, do not use carriage returns within cells. Use tabs and not spaces when setting up columns without a table editor.

All figures and tables should be referred to in the text and numbered consecutively. Their captions (Fig. 1, Fig. 2, etc.) should be placed on a separate page at the end of the manuscript. Tables (Table 1, Table 2, etc.) should have an explanatory caption at the top.

Please consult the editors if additional details are required regarding document formats and image specifications.


Papers reporting work that required permits should quote the appropriate permit type and numbers.

Sequence data

All nucleotide sequence data and alignments should be submitted to an appropriate public database, such as Genbank or EMBL. The accession numbers for all sequences must be cited in the article.

Journal style

For further information on style, write to the editors, or consult the latest issue of The Victorian Naturalist or most recent edition of Style Manual for Authors, Editors and Printers (John Wiley & Sons: Milton, Qld).

Authors are advised to note the layout of headings, tables and illustrations as given in recent issues of the journal. A full stop is followed by a single space; single quotation marks are used throughout.

In all papers, first reference to a species should use both the common name and binomial. This journal uses capitalised common names for species, followed by the binomial in italics without brackets, e.g. Kangaroo Grass Themeda triandra. However, where many species are mentioned, a list (an appendix at the end), with both common and binomial names, may be preferred. Lists must be in taxonomic order using the order in which they appear in the references recommended below.

References to printed sources

References in the text should cite author and year, e.g. Brown (1990), (Brown 1990), (Brown 1990, 1991), (Brown 1995 unpubl.), (Brown and Green 1990), (Brown and Green 1990; Blue 1990; Red 1990). If there are more than two authors for a paper use (Brown et al. 1990). All references mentioned in the text should be included, in alphabetic order, at the end of the text under References (see examples below). The use of unpublished data is accepted only if the data are available on request for viewing. Pers. obs. and pers. comm. should not be included in the list of references. Journal titles should be given in full.

Leigh J, Boden R and Briggs J (1984) Extinct and Endangered Plants of Australia. (Macmillan: South Melbourne).

Lunney D (1995) Bush Rat. In The Mammals of Australia, pp. 651-653. Ed R Strahan. (Australian Museum/Reed New Holland: Sydney).

Phillips A and Watson R (1991) Xanthorrhoea: consequences of 'horticultural fashion'. The Victorian Naturalist 108, 130-133.

Smith AB (1995) Flowering plants in north-eastern Victoria. (Unpublished PhD thesis, The University of Melbourne).

Wolf L and Chippendale GM (1981) The natural distribution of Eucalyptus in Australia. Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service, Special Publications No 6, Canberra.

References to websites

Reference within the text to a website, should be in the form ('Website name' 'year'). All references mentioned in the text should be included, in alphabetic order, at the end of the text, complete with the date website was accessed, e.g.

BoM (2014) Climate data online. Available from: <> (accessed 14 January 2014). (Bureau of Meteorology: Melbourne).

Manuscript corrections

Page proofs are provided to the corresponding author for checking prior to publication. At this stage only minor alterations may be made.

Complimentary copies

Following publication of an article in the journal, the corresponding author of each paper will be provided with a PDF copy of the article. Complimentary copies of the full issue, in printed form, can be sent on request.

Taxonomic names

Cite references used for taxonomic names. Checking species names is the responsibility of authors. The books we use as references for articles in The Victorian Naturalist are listed below. Authors should refer to the source used for species names in their manuscripts. In every case, the latest edition should be used.

Mammals - Menkhorst PW and Knight F (2011) A Field Guide to the Mammals of Australia. 3rd edn. (Oxford University Press: South Melbourne).

Reptiles and Amphibians - Cogger H (2014) Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. 7th edn. (CSIRO: Collingwood, Victoria).

Insects and Marine Creatures - ABRS: <>

Birds - Christidis L and Boles WE (2008) Systematics and taxonomy of Australian birds. (CSIRO: Collingwood, Victoria).

Plants - VicFlora (2015). Flora of Victoria, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, <>, last accessed (insert relevant date).

Please submit manuscripts and enquiries to:

The Editor The Victorian Naturalist PO Box 13 Blackburn, Victoria 3130

Phone: +61 (03) 9877 9860 Email: Web:
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Article Details
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Publication:The Victorian Naturalist
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:8AUVI
Date:Dec 1, 2019
Previous Article:A Guide to Crickets of Australia.

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