Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  • General instructions

    The following checklist will help you make sure that your manuscript will have a good chance with editors and reviewers. Please tick each box only after you are sure that your manuscript complies: most of these instructions are part of science everywhere, and their value has been proven over many years.

    TEXT: Follow the standard structure of a scientific paper (do not merge results with discussion). Apply an automatic spell checker, and provide the total number of words at the foot of the first page.

    IMAGES: Attach sharp photographs at 300 DPI and illustrations at 600 DPI (we accept JPG, TIFF, PNG and Photoshop). Very important: all figures should have labels using Helvetica 10 points as their font type and size (check our Figures Guide)

    UPLOAD your manuscript and attach a scanned copy of the submission letter signed by all coauthors (download letter here). The submission system will immediately confirm reception. If you have problems, check our FAQ.

  • Manuscript characteristics

    The manuscript is either a review or a research article that meets the requirements of our scope.

  • Introductory section

    In the title, use capital letters to start proper names. The title must be short and include, in parentheses, Order and Family (botanical papers: only Family). Do not use local names in the title.

    For taxonomy articles only: include full genus, author and year only the first time each taxon is mentioned in each article section.

    The address for correspondence must be short but complete; if there are several addresses, numbered them. Include valid e-mails for all coauthors.

    The Abstract (350-450 words) must have five subtitles: Introduction; Objective; Methods (include study period and sample size); Results and Conclusions (see examples in
    recent articles).

    Include 5-7 key words that do not appear in the title or in the abstract (if you have doubts see
    a recent article).

    Include an introduction that summarizes recent findings in chronological order and ends with the objective of the study.

  • Material and Methods

    Present only the information required to repeat the study. For previously published methods, a brief description and the reference are enough.

    Do not include a map for just one study site; instead, provide its geographic coordinates. A map is appropriate for studies with various sampling locations or when additional information, such as vegetation, is needed.

    If voucher specimens were collected, include museum data.

    Only include equipment model and manufacturer when these could affect the results. For chemical products just name the manufacturer.

    Include a description of each component for mathematical formulas.

    Avoid acronyms, but if you must use them, explain the first time, for example: “RBT (Revista de Biología Tropical)”.

    We use the
    International System of Units and their abbreviations, except that decimals are indicated with a period, thousands and millions with a space, eg. 12 523 235.15

    When not followed by units, write integers from zero to ten in full (one, two etc., not 1, 2 etc.).

  • Results

    Avoid “Statistics” sections in the paragraphs, it is often better to present the data after each result and in parentheses, for example: “Height and speed were positively correlated (Spearman, p< 0.05)”, or even better: “Taller individuals were faster (Spearman, p< 0.05)”.

    Tables and Figures

    Avoid isolated figures by grouping related photographs, graphs and other illustrations. Include all symbols and scales inside the figure (not in the figure caption). For better graphs read

    If the manuscript is written in Spanish, please use the word "Tabla" instead of "Cuadro" throughout the manuscript.

    Use short table headings and move all symbols and abbreviations to the footnotes under the table. Avoid words written fully in upper case or in bold font. Avoid long or very short tables (half to one page long tables are a good size), and do not insert vertical and horizontal lines.

  • Discussion

    This section compares your results with previously published data. Do not include tables or figures here.

  • Acknowledgments

    Only mention persons who gave significant assistance. “Dr.”, “Prof.”, “Mrs.”, among others, are not used, only names.

  • Resumen and Palabras clave

    These are the Spanish versions of abstract and keywords. Our staff will translate them, free of charge, for authors who do not speak Spanish. For everyone else: please start with the title of the article in Spanish and make sure that the Spanish and English versions match.

  • References

    Present the list of references and citations within the text in APA 7th Edition format. We recommend the use of free reference managers like and

    Only cited publications appear under References and vice versa. Unpublished papers are mentioned in the text as in this example: (J. Smith, unpublished).

    Format examples:

    Journal Article

    Torres, J.R., Infante-Mata, D., Sánchez, A.J., Espinoza-Tenorio, A., & Barba, E. (2017). Atributos estructurales, productividad (hojarasca) y fenología del manglar en la Laguna Mecoacán, Golfo de México. Revista de Biología Tropical, 65(4), 1592-1608.


    Hanson, P.E., & Nishida, K. (2016). Insects and other arthropods of tropical America. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

    Book chapter

    Pardini, R., da Rocha, P.L.B., El-Hani, C., & Pardini, F. (2013). Challenges and Opportunities for Bridging the Research–Implementation Gap in Ecological Science and Management in Brazil. In P.H. Raven, N.S. Sodhi & L. Gibson (Eds.), Conservation Biology : Voices from the Tropics (pp. 75-85). Oxford, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Author Guidelines

Before submission, carefully review format, style and requirements:

Then send the manuscript in Word, the figures as attachmenis in JPG high quality, and photo or scan of signed submission letter:

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