Instructions for Authors

(follow this link for Guidelines for Case Preparation, which provide broader guidance on Case content)

The following are formatting instructions primarily for those preparing applications; other authors should comply with the relevant sections. Applications should be prepared in the format of recent parts of the Bulletin; manuscripts not prepared in accordance with these guidelines may be returned.

General: Applications are requests to the Commission to set aside or modify the Code's provisions as they relate to a particular name or group of names when this appears to be in the interest of stability of nomenclature. Authors submitting cases should regard themselves as acting on behalf of the zoological community and the Commission will treat applications on this basis. Applicants should discuss their cases with other workers in the same field before submitting applications, so that they are aware of any wider implications and the likely reactions of other zoologists.

Text: Typed in double spacing, this should consist of numbered paragraphs setting out the details of the case and leading to a final paragraph of formal proposals. Text references should give dates and page numbers in parentheses, e.g. 'Daudin (1800, p. 49) described ...'. All applications should contain the following: abstract, keywords, numbered paragraphs, the last of which should contain the formal proposals to the Commission. If the plenary power of the Commission is sought, this necessity should be clearly explained (with reference to the relevant Articles of the Code). The names upon which the Commission’s ruling is sought should have page reference. Similarly, the page reference should be provided for citations of synonymies relevant to the case, subsequent spelling, First Reviser actions, etc. When the Commission’s ruling is sought based on prevailing usage, the applicants are recommended to provide as many references as possible in the form of separate lists to be held by the Secretariat. The crucial references should be included in the application. When a ruling on neotype designation is requested, the detailed information of the specimen proposed as a neotype should be provided.
References. These should give all authors of a publication. Where possible, ten or more reasonably recent references should be given illustrating the usage of names that are to be conserved or given precedence over older names. For both periodical and book citations, lines subsequent to the first are indented. Authors’ initials always follow the surname.
1. Periodicals. The title of periodicals should be in full and in italics. The title of the paper is given in Roman script, capitals are only used for proper nouns in English, and where appropriate in other languages, e.g.
Miers, E.J. 1878. Revision of the Hippidea. Journal of the Linnean Society of London, (Zoology), 14: 312-336.
The author and volume number are given in bold. The year of publication is not in bold and is followed by a full stop. A comma separates title and series/volume/part number. A colon separates series/volume/part number and page numbers. A hyphen separates first and last page of relevance. The reference ends with a full stop. 
Series numbers are given in parentheses (but not in bold) before the volume number; part or issue numbers are given in parenthesis after the volume number (but not in bold), e.g.
Memoire della Reale Academia delle Scienze di Torino, (2)13: 19-94.
Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, (Harvard College) 52(16): 303-317.
Papers by more than one author are cited as shown below, with an ampersand (&) before the last author in a list (ampersands are similarly used in the text); commas separate surname and initials; full stops separate initials and come after the last initial. There is no space between initials, e.g.
Michener, C.D. & Moure, J.S. 1957. A study of the . . .
Michener, C.D., McGinley, R.J. & Danforth, B.N. 1994. The bee genera . . .
2. Book titles. These should be in italics and followed by the number of pages (both Roman and Arabic numerals where appropriate) and plates, the publisher and place of publication, e.g.
Michener, C.D. 2000. The bees of the world. xiv, 913 pp. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.
If a title is given in Latin, publisher and place of publication may also be given in their latinized form and as in the original publication, e.g.
Gmelin, J.F. 1788. Caroli a Linné, Systema Naturae, Ed. 13, vol. 1, part 4. Lipsiae.
Long titles may be abbreviated, but should continue to make sense, e.g.
Owen, R. 1839. Crustacea. Pp. 77-92, pl. 25 in Beechey, F.W. (Ed.), The zoology of Captain Beechey’s voyage…to the Pacific and Behring’s straits performed in Her Majesty’s ship Blossom…in the years 1825, 26, 27 and 28.
Bohn, London.
Plate is indicated by pl. and several plates are indicated by pls. (both are followed by a full stop).  Editor is abbreviated to (Ed.) and editors to (Eds.) (both are followed by a full stop). Book edition is abbreviated to Ed. (no parenthesis). Page is abbreviated to p. or P. (if it appears after a full stop) and pages to pp. or Pp. (if it appears after a full stop). Edition (Ed.) and volume number (vol.) are separated from the title by a comma. Part number is separated from volume by a comma. Page number is separated by a full stop from volume or part number and by a comma from plate number. Multiple authors follow the same style as for periodicals. The reference ends with a full stop, e.g.
Jones, A.B. 2002. Animals of the world, Ed. 2, vol.1, part 2. 222 pp., 12 pls. Publisher, place of publication.
Smith, A.B. & Jones, B. 2001. In search of rare animals, vol. 1, part 3. 254 pp., 6 pls. Publisher, place of publication.

Submission of application: Applications should be submitted electronically, preferably by email (within the message or as an attachment) to iczn (at)  When submitted by post, one copy should be sent to: The Secretary, International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature, c/o Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, 2 Conservatory Drive, Singapore 117377, Republic of Singapore. The typescript should be accompanied by a disk with copy in IBM PC compatible format (disks and attachments to be in Word, rtf or ASCII text). It would also be helpful if applications were accompanied by photocopies of relevant pages of the main references where this is possible.
The Secretariat will advise on aspects of the formulation of an application.

Illustrations:If a neotype designation is requested it is strongly advisable to submit an appropriate illustration in TIFF format of sufficiently high resolution for printing. Hardcopy figures will be accepted, at discretion of the Editor. It is desirable to illustrate both specimen and its label, with a scale bar. Furthermore, we are willing to consider illustrations of the organisms under discussion contributed simply to add visual interest to the applications. Line drawings should be high-resolution TIFFs at 1200 dpi; photographs may be 400 dpi. If the files are difficult to send electronically, LZW compression of TIFF files allows recovery of original file quality. Please note that JPG format often introduces artefacts in printing, thus we are not able to accept JPGs.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith