Guide for Authors

Marine Mammal Science publishes significant new findings on marine mammals resulting from original research on their form and function, evolution, systematics, physiology, biochemistry, behavior, population biology, life history, genetics, ecology and conservation. Range extensions, unusual observations of behavior, and preliminary studies of a few individuals are published only where there is sufficient new information to render the manuscript of general interest. Low priority will be given to confirmatory investigations of local or regional interest. The Journal endorses the principle that experiments using live animals should be undertaken only for the purpose of advancing knowledge. Consideration should be given to the appropriateness of experimental procedures, species of animals used, and number of animals required. All animal experimentation reported in Marine Mammal Science must be conducted in conformity with the relevant animal care codes of the country of origin. The Editor will refuse manuscripts in which evidence of adherence to such codes is not apparent. Marine Mammal Science publishes

  1. Articles: important original research;
  2. Review Articles: critical appraisals which place recent research in a new conceptual framework;
  3. Notes: short communications on current research, important preliminary findings or new techniques;
  4. Opinions: invited contributions on selected topics;
  5. Letters: a forum for communications in response to papers previously published in Marine Mammal Science, opinion, interpretation, and new information about all topics of interest to marine mammalogists;
  6. Obituaries and In Memoriam Notices: Obituaries are short announcements of recent deaths of Society for Marine Mammalogy members and In Memoriam notices are longer descriptions of the career and accomplishments of recently deceased members who have made major contributions to the field of marine mammal science and the Society.

Articles, Review Articles and Notes are subject to peer review. Any Letter challenging published results or interpretations is transmitted to the author of the published work with an invitation to respond. The Letter and its response are published simultaneously. Letters are judged by the Editor on appropriateness of the subject and interest to readers. Obituaries and In Memoriam Notices require contacting the Editor before submitting material. Brief Obituaries and In Memoriam Notices will be published after review by the Editor.

Manuscript Preparation

The manuscript should be concise, logical, and unequivocal. Publication is facilitated if authors double-check for typographical and other errors and ensure that manuscripts and figures meet the requirements outlined below. Manuscripts that do not conform will be returned for correction before consideration. If in doubt, consult the Editorial Office. Authors are charged for excessive changes in proof. If English is not your primary language before submitting your paper make sure to seek input from an appropriate source for proofreading it, if needed. It is the author’s responsibility to ensure that the standards of English are suitable. It is not the job of reviewers or editors to make such editorial corrections during the review process. The Editor-in-Chief may reject a paper without assigning it for review if the quality of the writing is poor.

Manuscripts must be submitted as a Microsoft Word document or in a document format that can be imported into Microsoft Word. The submission should not be in Adobe PDF format.

A full-length Article includes a title page, abstract, keywords, text, acknowledgments, literature citations, tables, figure captions, and figures. Notes and Letters do not have an abstract and are prepared in narrative form without headings, except for “Literature Cited.” All parts of the manuscript, including footnotes, tables, and figure captions, should be typewritten, double-spaced with margins at least 2.5 cm wide. Number all pages of the manuscript beginning with the title page and include line numbers on each page. Underline only when the material is to be set in italics or italicize directly. Use capital letters only when the letters or words are to be capitalized. Do not end a line of text with a hyphen.

Title Page

The first page should contain only the title, the name(s), and affiliation(s), (plus current affiliation, if different) of the author(s). The title should be brief and contain words useful for indexing and information retrieval.

  • Do not use “and” or “&” between last two authors.
  • Forenames are spelled out; initials are spaced out.
  • Use superscript numerals to indicate affiliation and place below author name(s).
  • Street names, PO box number, and ZIP (postal) code are not allowed.
  • List department, institution, city, state (if US), or country (outside USA)
  • USA state names are spelled out; include province for Canada and state for Australia

Corresponding Author

  • The heading “Correspondence” should be set in bold and roman.
  • Complete mailing address with email ID is required. Phone and fax numbers not needed.
  • Provide country names other than USA.
  • Email starts on a new line. Use “Email” without a hyphen.

Abstract and Key Words

The abstract, of not more than 200 words typed on a separate page, should precisely reflect the contents of the paper, and focus attention on the purpose of the study, principal results, conclusions and their significance. Below the abstract, provide and identify as such three to ten key words or short phrases that will assist in cross-indexing your article. The heading “KEYWORDS” should be set in all caps, bold, and roman. Set in lowercase (except for proper nouns, etc.); alphabetical order; separated by commas; no end period Wiley has compiled guidelines to enable you to optimize the discoverability on the web of the most public part of your article (the title and the article abstract).

Article discoverability is increasingly important as researchers are finding content through more specific search criteria and less through browsing the literature. Optimizing your article for search engines will greatly increase its chance of being viewed and/or cited in another work.

In addition to enhancing specific author metrics (individual article downloads and citations) creating an article that gets high returns through search engines helps Marine Mammal Science. Just as relevance is crucial to career advancement for you, it is also integral to library renewal decisions for the journal.

Wiley has compiled guidelines to enable you to optimize the discoverability on the web of the most public part of your article (the title and the article abstract).


As a general guide, the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association must be followed. Spelling should be standard U.S. (not British) to conform to Webster’s Third New International Dictionary. Units should conform to the Système International d’Unités (SI). Non-standard abbreviations must be defined the first time they appear. Mathematical symbols, Greek letters, and unusual symbols should be identified clearly; superscripts and subscripts should be legible and carefully placed.

Standard Abbreviations


ns (nanosecond), ms (millisecond), s (second), min (minute), hr (hour); do not abbreviate day, week, month, year

g (gram), mg, kg, Hz, kHz, MHz, km, m (meter), mm, cm, cc, mi (mile), ft, in. (note period), kn (knot), ha, gal, ml, L (liter, spell out when used alone).


p (probability), xˉ (mean, x-bar above), SD, SE, CV, SEM, n (sample size), df, r (correlation coefficient), t, F, U, Z (statistical tests); letters in equations are italicized.

Latin words and phrases

i.e., (note comma); e.g., (note comma); ca. (only used with dates); c.f.; in vivo; in situ; vs.; etc.; per se; et al.; via; sensu; sensu faro; sensu stricto; a priori. These common ones are not set in italics.


List all acknowledgments briefly under a single heading at the end of the text on a separate page. If applicable, give the permit number under which the work was conducted.

Reference List

References should be cited in the text in the following form:

  • One author: Smith (2000) and (Smith, 2000).
  • Two authors: (Smith & Jones, 2004) and Smith and Jones (2004).
  • Three to five authors (first occurrence): Smith, Jones, and Brown (1993) and (Smith, Jones, & Brown, 1993).
  • Three to five authors (subsequent occurrence): Smith et al. (1993) and (Smith et al., 1993).
  • Six or more authors: Smith et al. (1999) and (Smith et al., 1999).

References are cited alphabetically, not chronologically in the text.

References should be double-spaced and listed alphabetically as “REFERENCES” in the following standard form, giving the journal titles in full and each author’s last name starting with a full capital followed by lowercase for the rest of the name.

Armstrong, W. A., & Oliver, C. W. (1995). Recent use of fish aggregating device in the eastern tropical Pacific tuna purse-seine fishery: 1990–1994. (Unpublished National Marine Fisheries Service Center Administrative Report LJ-95-14, 47 pp,). Available from SWFC, PO Box 271, La Jolla, CA 92038.

Gentry, R. L., & Holt, J. R. (1982). Equipment and techniques for handling northern fur seals. (NOAA Technical Report NMFS SSRF-758, 15 pp.). Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Commerce.

Hubbs, C. L., Perrin, W. F., & Balcomb, K. C. (1973). Stenella coeruleoalba in the eastern and central tropical Pacific. Journal of Mammalogy, 54, 549–552.

Leatherwood, S., & Reeves, R. R . (1983). The Sierra Club handbook of whales and dolphins. San Francisco, CA: Sierra Club Books.

Murchison, A. E. (1980). Detection range and range resolution of echolocating bottlenose porpoise (Tursiops truncatus). In R.-G. Busnel & J. F. Fish (Eds.), Animal sonar systems (pp. 43–70). New York, NY: Plenum Press.

U.S. Federal Register. 1997. Endangered and threatened wildlife and plants; change in listening status of western population of Steller sea lion as endangered. FR 62(108):30772– 30773 (5 June 1997). Washington, DC: National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.

References with eight or more authors: list first six authors, elipses, last author as in the following example:

Zuerner, R. L., Cameron, C. E., Raverty, S., Robinson, J., Colegrove, K. M., Norman, S. A., … Gulland, F. (2009). Geographical dissemination of Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona during seasonal migration of California sea lions. Veterinary Microbiology, 137, 105–110.

Issue numbers are not used unless page numbering begins at 1 with each issue. The number of pages is not given for books, but should be included for unpublished documents, theses, and “gray literature” (government reports, technical bulletins, etc.)

Reference list order:

  • General: arranged alphabetically by author surname.
  • Several works of same first author:
    ” Single author: arranged chronologically.
    ” Single author, same year: arrange alphabetically by title of the work (excluding A, An, The); exception: works part of series, then arrange in series order (Part 1 and Part 2); indicate by placing lowercase letters immediately after year to help differentiate in-text citation.
  • Multiple author works: single author first, followed by multiple author works.
  • Only multiple author works: follow alphabetical order for second author and then the third author and so on.
  • Several works of two or more authors in same order: arrange chronologically.
  • Several works of two authors or more authors in same order, same year: see single author, same year.
  • Several works of authors with same surname: arrange alphabetically by first initial.
  • Alphabetize the prefixes M’, Mc, and Mac literally, not as if they were all spelled Mac. Disregard the apostrophe: MacArthur precedes McAllister, and MacNeil precedes M’Carthy.
  • Group authors (Agency, Association or Institution): alphabetize using first significant word of name; full name to be used; a parent body precedes a subdivision (University of Michigan, Department of Marine Biology).
  • Author designated as anonymous: alphabetize as if anonymous were a true name.
  • No author: title moves to author position, alphabetize by first significant word of title.

Citation of personal communications and unpublished data are not to be included under ‘Literature Cited’ but should be referenced as footnotes that include the complete name and address of the source and the month and year of the communication or notification of the unpublished data. If the unpublished data citation is from the author or a coauthor, a footnote with details is not required. Meeting abstracts should not be cited as such or included in the Literature Cited Section. If information from an abstract is the only source of support for a point being made, it must be treated as a personal communication or unpublished data and have received prior approval from the author of the abstract before being cited. Such citations should be used minimally and shall not comprise a critical component of a major point being made in the manuscript because the validity or reliability of such data cannot be evaluated properly by readers. A paper may be cited ‘in press’ only if it has been accepted in final form by a journal. Papers ‘submitted’ or ‘in preparation’ may not be cited as such, but information in them may be cited as ‘personal communication.’ Any citation of information based on a manuscript submitted or in preparation, must be with the explicit permission of the lead author or person who provided the information. Citations of non-refereed documents (e.g., contract reports, environmental impact statements, meeting working papers) and gray literature is discouraged and should not be used as “one more example” of a point when primary peer-reviewed literature is cited to support the point. However, if there is no primary peer-reviewed literature to support important findings or the interpretation of those findings presented in the manuscript, they may be cited. Such citations should only be referenced in the Literature Cited section if the reference is readily available to the reader. The source for the reference must be given, including if necessary the address where it can be obtained. Any document bearing a ‘Do not cite without permission’ statement may be cited only with the explicit permission of the lead author. A statement that all necessary permissions have been obtained must be included in the cover material accompanying the submitted manuscript. Authors must double-check all literature cited; they are solely responsible for its accuracy.


Excessive tabular data are discouraged. Tables should be typed separately and double-spaced. Tables should be numbered with Arabic numerals in the sequence first referenced in the text and have a brief title. Column headings and descriptive footnotes should be brief. Do not use vertical rules.


Please read this information carefully to avoid publication delays. All figures will be reproduced exactly as transmitted, so authors must take special care to prepare high-quality files. Check with your technology support personnel if you need help with producing the proper files.

Filename is Ms#_Fig#.ext, e.g., 2271_Fig1.pdf or 2271_Fig2.tif. If there are several parts to a figure, label them as 3(a), 3(b), 3(c), etc. (note use of lowercase letters).

Each figure must be a separate file. If you have a multipart figure, the Press prefers to receive these as a single file, with panels labeled within the image, rather than as multiple files. However, if necessary you may transmit each part of the figure separately along with a document that shows how they should be laid out (including white space). Figures consisting of more than one panel should include lowercase panel designations (“a,” “b,” “c,” etc.).
Line art (charts, graphs, line drawings) should be prepared using a vector drawing program such as Adobe Illustrator or CorelDraw and the files submitted in EPS, AI, or CRD format. The minimum resolution is 600 dpi. Photographs should be in TIFF format with a minimum resolution of 300 dpi. Combination photograph and line illustrations should be in TIFF or EPS format with a minimum resolution of 600 dpi. Do not embed photographs in Word, PowerPoint, or PDF files.

Check that figures are well labeled, e.g., units on the x- and y-axes are marked.

Ensure that spellings and abbreviations on the figures are consistent with those used in the text (and journal style).
Fonts and line thickness should be large enough to still be legible but not excessively large after reduction to fit the maximum size of figures in Marine Mammal Science (11.7 x 17.5 cm).

Font styles and sizes should be consistent within and between figures. Use standard fonts such as Times, Arial, Helvetica, or Symbol. Sans serif fonts such as Arial and Helvetica are ideal and should be used whenever possible.
Keys and scale bars should be placed inside the figure whenever possible.

Avoid placing labels over shaded areas of a figure. Best results are obtained from black lettering on a white background. If the area requiring a label contains shading, it is best to create a white box and place the black label within.

Omit any extraneous information, such as page numbers, figure numbers, author names, or manuscript number, from the figure. Figures themselves should not contain a title or text that is duplicated in the figure legend. Figure legends should be included separately with the manuscript text.

More detailed information on the submission of electronic artwork can be found at:


Most papers require statistical analyses to support interpretation of the data. Use of appropriate statistical analyses is critical. Not all scientists are proficient at determining the correct or most appropriate analyses to be used for the nature of the data or design of the study. If none of the authors is a statistician or quantitative biologist, it is important for the authors to consult with someone who has the appropriate expertise to provide guidance on statistical analyses. There has been frequent inappropriate use of lack of statistical significance being stated as “no significant differences” and interpreting this to mean things are not different or are similar. Such statements will no longer be allowed in MMS papers. See Armhein et al. 2019 in Nature 567: 305-307 for discussion of  the problems with how statistical significance is being used inappropriately.

Registration of Nucleotide and Amino Acid Sequences

Newly reported DNA or amino acid sequences must be deposited in the appropriate public databases (GenBank/EMBL/DNA Data Bank of Japan or UniProtKB/Swiss-Prot). Accession numbers must be included in the final version of the manuscript prior to publication.

Taxonomic Usage

Taxonomic usage in Marine Mammal Science should follow the List of Marine Mammal Species and Subspecies on the Society for Marine Mammalogy website. This list will periodically be updated as appropriate. Authors wishing to use a different nomenclature should explain the departure in a footnote. The Editor may seek input from the Society’s Committee on Taxonomy before accepting a departure.

Policy for Papers Based on Samples Obtained Lethally

The journal’s current policy is to allow publication of papers that include data from lethal sampling as long as the sampling has been done legally in the country from which the samples were obtained. In cases where animals are taken in international waters it is difficult to apply this standard. In January 2016, the Board of Governors of the Society for Marine Mammalogy reconsidered this policy in light of the Society’s Guidelines for the Treatment of Marine Mammals in Field Research, which states the following with regard to the use of samples obtained lethally :

  • Researchers should use alternative non-lethal procedures when they are available and satisfy the objectives of the research.
  • Animals should be killed in the most humane and rapid method available.
  • Any population or stock-scale impacts should be minimized through prudent selection of animals (e.g. avoidance of reproductive females if possible) and sample size.
  • Where possible on-going activities outside the research community (e.g. hunting, by-catches, strandings) should be utilized as a source of material for scientific studies of marine mammals.

Marine Mammal Science is thus revising its policy regarding papers based on the use of samples obtained lethally. The new policy will be: The journal will only consider papers based on data acquired through lethal sampling if there is no other reasonable alternative for obtaining the information. The decision to reject a paper under this criterion will be made by the Editor in consultation with Associate Editors and input from reviewers. In cases where animals are killed incidentally to human activities (e.g., bycatch or ship strike) or are obtained during legal native subsistence hunting, even though there may be a nonlethal way to obtain the information, the Editor may allow the paper to be published. If an author feels a decision by the Editor is unreasonable or biased, the author may appeal to the Society for Marine Mammalogy’s Ethics Committee. Upon review of the relevant information and in consultation with Ethics Committee members, the Chairman of this Committee will then decide whether the Editor’s decision should stand or be reversed.

Policy Regarding Plagiarism and Self-Plagiarism

Marine Mammal Science believes that repeating text (full sentences or paragraphs) verbatim or nearly verbatim from previously published papers without giving proper attribution is not acceptable, whether the paper from which the text has been taken was by another author (plagiarism) or the same author (self-plagiarism). When such an issue is raised by a reviewer or Editor for a paper, and it is for plagiarism, the paper will likely be rejected without the ability for resubmission, although cases deemed minor may be given the opportunity to be remedied. Major cases may also be brought to the attention of the author’s institution. If it is for self-plagiarism, the nature and extent of the overlap in text will be examined through software that cross references published material, and a determination of the course of action that should be taken will be made by the Editor in consultation with Wiley publication ethics advisors. It is recognized that methodology often follows previously developed methods, and thus descriptions may be the same or similar. This is fine but be sure you acknowledge the source of previously published methodology. If it is large amounts of text verbatim use quotation marks along with the source, but if it is paraphrased, providing the source is sufficient. A first case of self-plagiarism being considered for an individual author will likely not result in a rejection or retraction, but the author will be notified in writing and be required to revise the paper appropriately. The author will be cautioned that a second offense would likely result in rejection/retraction of the paper and future submissions by the author would be checked by the cross-referencing software before being considered. Please see the following for discussions of self-plagiarism:

Submission of Manuscripts

All manuscripts should be submitted online at: Useful guidelines can be found in ScholarOne’s “Quick-Start Guide for Authors” and “Tips for Uploading Files in Manuscript Central” located at: Please contact the editorial office at if you have problems submitting your manuscript. A manuscript number will be assigned to each new submission and sent to the submitting author via return email. In all correspondence beyond the initial submission, please put your assigned manuscript number on the subject line of your email. Authors submitting a manuscript do so on the understanding that if it is accepted for publication, copyright of the article, including the right to reproduce the article in all forms and media, shall be assigned exclusively to The Society for Marine Mammalogy. The Society will not refuse any reasonable request by the author for permission to reproduce any of his or her contributions to MARINE MAMMAL SCIENCE. Authors are responsible for the publication fee of $15.00 (U.S.) per printed page or part thereof. If funds for publication are not supplied by an agency or grant, a waiver of the publication fee may be applied for by email to the Editor at Please write “waiver request” and the manuscript number on the subject line.

The F. G. Wood Student Scholarship and John R. Twiss Jr. Student Award

Forest G. Wood, a founder of the Society for Marine Mammalogy, was noted for his editorial skills. All students submitting manuscripts accepted for publication in Marine Mammal Science should indicate at the time of submission if they want to be considered for this award. The Board of Editors will select the winner from among the accepted manuscripts submitted during the interval between successive Biennial Conferences on the Biology of Marine Mammals. The John R. Twiss Jr. Award is for a student paper based on innovative research related to marine mammal habitat and ecosystem conservation. If your paper fits the criteria for this Award and you want to be considered for it, then also indicate at the time of submission.


This journal will consider for review articles previously available as preprints on non-commercial servers such as ArXiv, bioRxiv, psyArXiv, SocArXiv, engrXiv, etc. Authors may also post the submitted version of their manuscript to non-commercial servers at any time. Authors are requested to update any pre-publication versions with a link to the final published article. Marine Mammal Science encourages authors to share their data and other artefacts supporting the results in their paper by archiving them in an appropriate public repository. Authors should include a data accessibility statement, including a link to the repository they have used, in order that this statement can be published alongside their paper. For example: The data that support the findings of this study are openly available in [repository name][doi], [reference number]. In recognition of the significance of data as an output of research effort, Wiley has endorsed the FORCE11 Data Citation Principles and is implementing a mandatory data citation policy. Hence, Marine Mammal Science now requires data to be cited in the same way as article, book, and web citations and authors must include data citations as part of their reference list. Data citation is appropriate for data held within institutional, subject focused, or more general data repositories. It is not intended to take the place of community standards such as in-line citation of GenBank accession codes. When citing or making claims based on data, authors must refer to the data at the relevant place in the manuscript text and in addition provide a formal citation in the reference list. We recommend the format proposed by the Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles: Authors; Year; Dataset title; Data repository or archive; Version (if any); Persistent identifier (e.g. DOI)