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Open Access Publications from the University of California

PaleoBios submission guidelines

Who can submit

PaleoBiosaccepts papers on all aspects of unpublished original paleontological research from all fields of paleontology. Authors need not be affiliated with UCMP, nor does research have to be based on UCMP collections. There are no page charges for publishing in PaleoBios.Please contact PaleoBios for additional information.

Author Requirements

Beginning January 1, 2019 (Volume 36) articles in PaleoBioswill be published under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0)*. Authors must accept the conditions of distribution specified by this license if they wish to publish their article in PaleoBios*.

Authors of accepted manuscripts describing and naming new zoological taxa MUST register their article and names with ZooBank ( to insure valid publication. This is now a requirement by the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN) for articles published in electronic-only format. Here are two instructional YouTube videos for registering with ZooBank: (publication:; new name: One can begin the registration process once your manuscript has been accepted for publication. Upon registering your publication you will receive an LSID code (e.g., LSID This code must be added to the final manuscript prior to its publication. Please contact PaleoBios if you need assistance.

Make sure your paper is in an acceptable format. We can accept papers in Microsoft Word or Rich Text Format (RTF). If you use a word-processing program other than Microsoft Word, look for an "export" or "save as" option in your program to save it as an RTF file.

Manuscripts must be in 11 point Cambria, double-spaced throughout, including literature cited, figure captions, and tables. Make margins one inch on all sides. Do not justify text. Sentences are to be separated by a single space. Indent paragraphs 1/4". Words to be italicized should be in italics, not underlined. Type author(s') name(s) and page number in the upper right-hand corner of each page, beginning with page 2 (Abstract page).

Figures should follow the digital image guidelines given below. Include all illustrations with submission (jpegs are acceptable at this stage but not for the final version), and provide all the information requested in the online submission form.

Manuscripts not in PaleoBios format will be subject to delay and further revision by the author.

1) Title page:
Title is in boldfaced “sentence” format—lower case with initial caps—and centered on the page. Type author name(s) in capital letters, centered below title. Type affiliation, complete unabbreviated mailing address, and e-mail address, centered below author name(s).

For multiple authors at different institutions, type superscript numbers after the last letter of each author's name, with the corresponding superscript numbers typed in front of the first letter of each author's address (e.g., JOHN DOE1, 1Department of Paleontology, Howland University; JANE BUCK2, 2Department of Geology, State University). Please indicate the corresponding author with an asterisk following the name.

2) Abstract page:
Provide a single paragraph summarizing paper, up to one double-spaced page (350 words). Please list 5-6 Keywords:just below the abstract.

3) Main Text: Please include these sections –INTRODUCTION, MATERIALS AND METHODS, RESULTS, SYSTEMATIC PALEONTOLOGY (if applicable), and DISCUSSION).

Main headings, such as MATERIALS AND METHODS, are in all caps and centered on one line. Secondary headings are boldfaced, first letter capitalized, left justified, and on a line by itself. Tertiary headings, if necessary, are to be indented and italicized and/or underlined, followed by an em dash with text following on the same line.

Nomenclature in manuscripts should follow standard International Codes.

All genera and species names are to be in italics. We REQUIRE the author name(s) and year for taxa at their first mention in the main body of the text.

Latin terms (sensu, in situ, contra, etc.) should be italicized except when they immediately follow italicized names. Do not italicize common Latin abbreviations (cf., et al., etc.).

Figures and tables must be cited in the text and appear in numerical order throughout the text. The author may indicate their preference for figure placement in the text.

Write out "Figure" only at the beginning of a sentence and in Figure legend (see sample captions below); otherwise use "Fig." if singular (e.g., Fig. 2 or Fig. 3A-C); "Figs." is plural only if referring to different figures (e.g., Figs. 2, 3).

Use the metric system. Write out numbers one to ten, unless a measurement (e.g., seven clams, 6.0 cm, 0.15 mm).

Styles for literature cited in text:

  • single author—Gray (1998) or (Gray 1998)
  • two authors—Gray and Black (1997) or (Gray and Black 1997)
  • three or more authors—use "et al." (e.g., Gray et al. (1998) or (Gray et al. 1998), but list all names in the LITERATURE CITED section.
  • Citation of papers accepted, but not yet published, e.g., Gray (in press) or (Gray in press). Papers in review are not to be listed in the LITERATURE CITED section, but referred to in text as, e.g., Gray (unpublished data) or (personal observation) or (personal communication)
  • taxon authority names—when citing authorities for taxonomic names please use the following formats: 1) in the main text use "taxon name author (year)," 2) for the taxon names in the systematic section list use "taxon name author, year."

Use commas to separate individual reference citations in parentheses, e.g., (Gray 1994, Black and Bleu 1997, Rose 1997, White et al. 1998), and list in chronological order starting with the earliest. Citations should be ordered first by publication date, second alphabetically, e.g., (Lander 1977, Kelly and Lander 1988b, Lander 1988, 1989, Lander and Kelly 1989).

All references in the main text must be listed in the LITERATURE CITED section and vice versa.

SYSTEMATIC PALEONTOLOGY section should conform to the following style: All supraspecific taxonomic category names should be centered and in small caps followed by authority and year. Please use a comma to separate name(s) and year, and use ‘and’ (Jones and Howdydoody, 2000) when there are two or more authors. We REQUIRE the authority and year for all taxonomic names at first mention in the MS text, and in the taxon listings in the SYSTEMATIC PALEONTOLOGY section.


TAENIOLABIDOIDEA Granger & Simpson, 1929
MICROCOSMODONTINAE Holtzman & Wolberg, 1977
MICROCOSMODON GIGANTIUMAuthor, year (add n. sp., n. comb., etc. if applicable)
Fig(s). #–#s

Synonomies list if applicable.

Diagnosis –For new or emended diagnoses.


Paratypes– The specimens if applicable.

Referred Specimens– Material other than type specimens.

Occurrence – This should include locality information including type localities if applicable.

Etymology –If applicable.

Subheadings –If there are subheadings they should be italicized and placed below the Description heading.

4)ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS should precede the LITERATURE CITED section.

List references in alphabetical order using the styles listed below.


Bell, C.J. 1993. Fossil lizards from the Elsinore fault zone, Riverside County, California.PaleoBios 15(2):17-26.

Wolfe, J.A, H.E. Schorn, C.R. Forest, and P. Molnar. 1997. Paleobotanical evidence for high altitudes in Nevada during the Miocene. Science 276:1672-1675.

Periodicals with edited theme:

Lucas, S.G., and R.M. Schoch. 1989. Taxonomy of Duchesneodus (Brontotheriidae) from the late Eocene of North America. In D.R. Prothero and R.M. Schoch (eds.). The Evolution of the Perissodactyls. Oxford Monographs on Geology and Geophysics 15(27):490-503.


Simpson, G.G. 1951. Horses: The Story of the Horse Family in the Modern World and Through Sixty Years of History. Oxford University Press, New York. 247 pp.

Edited books:

Rose, K.D., and T.M. Bown. 1993. Species concepts and species recognition in Eocene primates. Pp. 299-330 in W.H. Kimbell and L.B. Martin (eds.). Species, Species Concepts, and Primate Evolution. Plenum Press, New York.


Author, 1., and 2. Author. 2019. Neogene biostratigraphy of the northern La Panza Range, San Luis Obispo County, California.In G.H. Blake (ed.), Pacific Section, Society of Economic Paleontologists and Mineralogists Guidebook 6:11–37, figs. 1–13, pls., 1–5.

Italicize publisher if guidebook is a contribution to a journal.


Klucking, E.P. 1962. An Oligocene flora from the western Cascades. Ph.D. diss. University of California, Berkeley, CA.

No space between author initials or the colon following the volume number.

Single-authored citations are listed first in chronological order, starting with the earliest date. Citations with same senior author and one coauthor are listed second, again in chronological order; those of same senior author with two coauthors are listed third, and so on.

Write out journal titles in full and they should be italicized.

6) Hyperlinks:
Where you wish to include a hyperlink to a web-based resource, please place the url within brackets at the end of the citation. Please check that the link is working.

Double-spaced; data arranged in columns in same font and size as text; each on a separate page with the title at the top of the table, numbered in Arabic numerals, in sequence according to its appearance in the text. Tab-delimited tables produced in Microsoft Word or Excel are preferred.

Do not use vertical lines to separate columns.

8) Figures (all non-table illustrations):
PaleoBios aims to publish illustrations of the highest quality so authors' adherence to PaleoBios format is appreciated.

We accept only high resolution digital images, and these can be in color.

Figure basics
Arrange figures in proper sequence according to their appearance in the text.

All photos, drawings and graphs are considered figures and each is to be numbered consecutively in Arabic numerals (e.g., 1, 2, 3, etc.), however, please use capital letters within a figure that is made up of multiple images. We do not use Plate numbers to refer to groups of images. Take a logical approach to using numbers and letters in figure designations and be consistent. All figure lettering should be done using the Cambria font.

Figures should include a scale bar or the size given in the caption (e.g., Scale bar=2 cm or 3x actual size). Specimen dimensions should be included in the description section in the main text, not in the figure captions.

Figure dimensions and resolution
Prepare your figures for final publication size, either one or two columns in width. PaleoBios has a two-column format: a one-column figure should be 8.7 cm or 3.417 inches wide; a two-column figure should be 17.8 cm or 7.0 inches wide. Maximum figure height is 23.4 cm or 9.21 inches. Leave no white space around the perimeter of figures—crop figures tightly so that the actual image spans the width of the page or column. Figures with black backgrounds are accepted.

All figures must be of sufficient resolution so that when printed, there is no pixelation or fuzziness—a minimum of 300 dpi for photographs and 600 dpi for line art (e.g., drawings, maps) is required. Once accepted, the final format for photographs (figures) may be in Adobe Photoshop (.psd extension) with layers saved; Adobe Illustrator, but you must submit (separately) any individual image files used in the making of the Illustrator file; or editable PDF. Put any numbers, lines, labels, letters, symbols or scale bar on a separate layer or layers (that goes for both Photoshop and Illustrator). FIGURES NOT MEETING THESE STANDARDS WILL BE RETURNED TO THE AUTHORS FOR EDITING.

PLEASE NOTE: In manuscripts submitted for review, the figures (plates) can be in JPEG or PDF format. However, jpeg format may not be used in your final submission for publication.

Figure captions
Type figure captions in paragraph form on a separate page, not on the actual figures. For grouped figures start with descriptor of inclusive series (see example below). Individual figures should be labeled with capital letters as we do not use Plates—see second paragraph under Figure basics above) and caption (e.g., Figs. 1, 2A–D). Note that figure numbers and letters are in bold. Use a comma to separate two consecutive numbers or letters (e.g., Fig. 2A, B; Figs. 1, 2E, F).

Figure 1. Map showing fossil locality.
Figure 2A–D. Skull of Stygimoloch spinifer, UCMP 1234567. A. Skull in right lateral view. B. Illustrative drawing of skull in right lateral view. C. Skull in left lateral view. D. Illustrative drawing of skull in left lateral view. Scale bar=5 mm. If illustrating elements in different views the following format is also acceptable: Figure 2A, B. Skull of Stygimoloch spinifer, UCMP 1234567 in right lateral (A) and left lateral (B) views. Scale bar=5 mm.

Be sure to provide explanations of all symbols/abbreviations used in figures.


Articles in PaleoBioswill be published under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License beginning with Volume 36 (January 1, 2019). Below is a description of the terms of use for our authors and readers.

CC BY-NC-SA –PaleoBios and the Author agree that the Submission will be distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0), or other later version of the same license, that allows others to copy, distribute, translate, adapt, and build upon the Submission, as long as they provide appropriate credit to the author(s) and do not use the Submission for commercial purposes. Anyone who translates, adapts, or builds upon the Submission must distribute their contributions under a CC BY-NC-SA license. Anyone who uses or redistributes the Submission under this license must indicate any changes that were made, must link to the license, and cannot imply that the author(s) endorse them or their use. More information about this license is available at