Author Guidelines

Types of Manuscripts
Reference Style
Copyright Transfer Agreement

The Limnology and Oceanography Bulletin  publishes Articles, Viewpoints, ASLO News Items, Member News, Community News, Meeting Highlights, and Book Reviews. Below are some guidelines concerning content and formatting for the various categories. Potential authors are strongly encouraged to contact one of the editors before submitting material.

The Bulletin  is published quarterly, with individual articles appearing online within a few weeks of acceptance. Contact the editors if you have a question regarding deadlines for inclusion in a particular issue. 

Types of Manuscripts

  • ARTICLES: Articles should be of broad interest to a large portion of the ASLO membership (and ideally to outside readers as well). For example, topics such as new directions or methods in aquatic science, new findings on or interpretations of major topics, or political and educational issues or approaches. Articles typically are between 3000 - 5000 words, include 3 figures, photos, or tables, and 5-10 references. As opposed to a scientific article, they are written in more of a newspaper or magazine style, meaning that the writing should be engaging. Figures or photographs can be in color and should be uploaded as separate files in TIF format (CMYK) or EPS, not imbedded in the text file.

  • VIEWPOINT: First person accounts, opinion pieces, comments or responses to Articles, or pleas to the community about some aquatic science or political (e.g., funding for science) issue are published as Viewpoint pieces. These are typically less than 1500 words and can include 2-3 references.

  • ASLO NEWS: ASLO News items include topical messages from ASLO officials and editors of ASLO publications, ASLO election information and results, policy analyses, and committee reports.

  • MEMBER NEWS: Member News includes obituaries, tributes, and announcements concerning members of ASLO, such as awards and distinctions. Announcements are typically very short (fewer than 100 words) and include an image of the ASLO member. Obituaries of ASLO members are typically ~1000 words and include an image of the ASLO member.

  • COMMUNITY NEWS: Community News items include information pieces about programs or initiatives of interest to the ASLO community. We also publish Institute Profiles, which present the history or future of institutes related to the aquatic sciences, such as field stations or marine labs. Length varies for these submissions, but should not exceed 1500 words. 

  • MEETING HIGHLIGHTS: Meeting Highlights include news and information related to recent meetings. The meeting should be of interest to a broad segment of aquatic scientists. Meeting Highlights are between 500-1500 words and include 1-2 images.

  • BOOK REVIEWS: Books reviewed in the Limnology and Oceanography Bulletin  are recent titles in the fields of oceanography, limnology, marine biology, aquatic ecology, ecology, and aquatic science policy and management, as well as occasionally 'popular science' books. Most reviews are commissioned by the editors, but we would very much like to hear suggestions for book reviews. Book reviews typically about 1000 words. If you would like to suggest a book for review or review a book, please contact the editors at

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References and Citations

References should be formatted as shown in the examples below. Double check the spelling of author names and years of publication. List the first eight authors; for nine or more authors, list the first three authors followed by “and others”.

For abbreviations of journal names refer to Chemical Abstracts Service Source Index (CASSI) or Biosis.

  • Article: Fenchel, T. 1986. Protozoan filter feeding. Prog. Protistol. 1: 65-113.
  • Articles with a Digital Object Identifier (doi): De Pol-Holz, R., O. Ulloa, L. Dezileau, J. Kaiser, F. Lamy, and D. Hebbeln. 2006. Melting of the patagonian ice sheet and deglacial perturbations of the nitrogen cycle in the eastern South Pacific. Geophys. Res. Lett. 33: L04704, doi:10.1029/2005GL024477
  • Book: Stumm, W., and J. Morgan. 1981. Aquatic chemistry, 2nd ed.Wiley.
  • Chapter: Codispoti, L. A. 1983. Nitrogen in upwelling systems, p. 513-564. In E. J. Carpenter and D. G. Capone [eds.], Nitrogen in the marine environment. Academic.
  • Thesis: Kimmance, S. A. 2001. The interactive effect of temperature and food concentration on plankton grazing and growth rates. Ph.D. thesis. Univ. of Liverpool.
  • Websites: A website may be referred to only if it is associated with an organization that is committed to maintaining it in perpetuity. Websites are referred to only in the text (provide URL and last accessed date) and are not included in the list of references. Personal or university-based websites are not allowed because such websites are prone to disappear when the scientist who created them moves or loses interest in material.

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Copyright Transfer Agreement

Authors must sign the copyright transfer agreement before their paper can be published. If your paper is accepted, the author identified as the formal corresponding author for the paper will receive an email prompting them to login to Author Services, where via the Wiley Author Licensing Service (WALS) they will be able to complete the license agreement on behalf of all authors of the paper.

For authors signing the copyright transfer agreement:

The corresponding author will be presented with the copyright transfer agreement (CTA) to sign. The terms and conditions of the CTA can be previewed in the samples associated with the Copyright FAQs below:

CTA Terms and Conditions

Please be aware of the following:

  • It is the corresponding author's legal responsibility to inform all co-authors of the terms of the CTA and to obtain their written consent to sign on their behalf;
  • If your co-authors are employees of the US, UK, or Canadian governments they will need to sign the CTA themselves (designating themselves as government employees). They may also need to sign and submit any additional agreements that their specific government requires of them. This separate CTA will need to be emailed to the production editor (
  • If your co-authors are "work-for-hire," instruct them to follow the specific instructions on the CTA for that employment designation. Again, if a separate CTA is required, it will need to be emailed to the production editor (

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Figures must be submitted in TIFF or EPS format (JPEG, GIF, PDF, and PPT are not suitable for print publication). Do not embed figures in your text document. To ensure the highest reproduction quality, figures should be submitted according to the following minimum resolutions:

  • 1200 dpi (dots per inch) for black and white or color line art (simple bar graphs, charts, etc.)
  • 300 dpi for halftones (black and white or color line photographs)
  • 600 dpi for combination color or halftones (photographs that also contain line art such as labeling or thin lines)

This specification means that a figure which you wish to be printed at a size, for example, of 2 x 2 inches will be 2,400 dots wide (black and white line art), or 600 dots wide (halftone). Vector-based figures (e.g., figures created in Adobe Illustrator) should be submitted in EPS format. Figure sizes should be no more than 8.5 inches (21.59 cm) in width and 11 inches (27.94 cm) in height.


Authors should call to the attention of the Editor-in-Chief any significant errors in their published manuscripts as soon as possible after they become aware of these errors. The Editor-in-Chief may authorize the publication of a correction, if the error is relatively minor and was inadvertent. Serious errors or discovery of fraudulent materials in a published paper may result in the retraction of the paper. Limnology & Oceanography Bulletin  follows the Retraction Guidelines of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) with regard to any corrections or retractions. An author who submits a manuscript to Limnology & Oceanography Bulletin  for possible publication is assumed to understand and agree with these Guidelines. The Guidelines and further information on publication fraud are available online at

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Authors are responsible for obtaining permission to reprint a previously published table, figure, or extract of more than 250 words and for submitting written permissions with their manuscript. Permission must also be obtained for images including professional photography, such as professional headshots. Acknowledgement alone is not sufficient; if in doubt, obtain permission. Permissions should be submitted to the Bulletin production office within 5 business days after your paper is accepted to avoid any delays in publication. Authors should exercise customary professional courtesy in acknowledging intellectual properties such as patents and trademarks. Authors wishing to reprint illustrations or text previously published in the Limnology and Oceanography Bulletin  or other ASLO titles should contact

Page Proofs and Publication

Authors are able to track their manuscript through the production process by registering for Author Services ( for additional information. Approximately two weeks after the manuscript is received by the publisher, the corresponding author will be notified via email that the page proofs have been posted to an online proofing system. Authors are responsible for proofreading. Further changes are limited to the correction of printer’s errors when possible. Corrected proofs should be returned to Wiley within 24 hours.

Contact Information

For more information, please contact the Limnology and Oceanography Bulletin Editors:

Adrienne Sponberg
ASLO Director of Communications and Science

Christopher Filstrup
Iowa State University

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