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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.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  • The submission file is in OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, RTF, or WordPerfect document file format.
  • Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  • The text is 1.5 spaced; uses a 12-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, below.
  • If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed.

Author Guidelines

Aims and Scope

Pachyderm publishes papers and notes concerning all aspects of African elephants, African rhinos and Asian rhinos with a focus on the conservation and management of these species in the wild. At the same time, the journal is a platform for disseminating information concerning the activities of the African Elephant, the African Rhino, and the Asian Rhino Specialist Groups of the IUCN Species Survival Commission. Currently, Pachyderm is published once a year and is ‘Platinum Open access’ (free access to published scientific works for readers with no publication fees for the authors to publish); all research, management and history papers are peer-reviewed.

Views expressed in Pachyderm are those of the individual authors, and do not necessarily reflect those of IUCN, the Species Survival Commission or any of the three Specialist Groups responsible for producing Pachyderm (namely the African Elephant Specialist Group, the African Rhino Specialist Group and the Asian Rhino Specialist Group).

Submission of Manuscripts

All manuscripts should be submitted online. If there are any questions or concerns regarding the submission process, please send an email to: and/or We are also contactable by post or telephone:

The Editor, Pachyderm
PO Box 68200–00200
Nairobi, Kenya
telephone: +254 20 249 3561/65

Terms and Conditions

By submitting your manuscript to Pachyderm means that you (the author(s)) agree to our terms and conditions, furthermore, submissions may be returned to authors who do not adhere to the following guidelines.

Kindly note that upon submission of your manuscript, our terms are strictly that the author(s) agrees not to publish the same paper elsewhere until a decision has been taken, either in hard copy or digital format.

Manuscripts are accepted in both English and French. Where possible, the abstract should be provided in both languages.

Pachyderm’s Editorial Board categorises material received into the following sections:

Research, management and history papers

Papers may be reports of original biology research or they may focus more on the socio-economic aspects of conservation, including market surveys. Each Research and Management paper is subject to peer review, the reviewers who are assigned have expertise in the specialist subject/s related to your paper. This process is “blind” with both author(s) and reviewer(s) anonymous to each other unless otherwise agreed.

Papers should not exceed 5,000 words (the word count is inclusive of all parts of the manuscript, including the title page, abstract, references, table and figure legends). Papers should be structured as follows: 1) Title, 2) Abstract must not exceed 250 words (informative type, outlining information from the Introduction, Materials and methods, Results, Discussion, but not detailed results); 3) additional key words (if any); not appearing in the title, maximum six; 4) Introduction; 5) Materials and methods; 6) Results; 7) Discussion; 8) Conclusions; if appropriate; 9) Acknowledgements (optional, brief); 10) References should be included only when essential and quoted in the text (maximum of 25); 11) Tables; 12) Figure and photo captions; 13) Figures and photos.

Field notes

The journal welcomes notes from the field. They may contain figures and tables but should be a maximum, up to 2,500 words.

Review papers

Review papers, which are unbiased reviews of all the existing knowledge on a specific topic, are welcomed. Length should be a maximum, up to 5,000 words.

Book reviews

Pachyderm invites reviews of newly published books, which should be around 1,500 words.

Letters to the editor

Letters should be addressed to the relevant Specialist Group Chair/Editor and should be <1,500 words. Letters are welcome that comment on articles published in Pachyderm or on any other issue relating to elephant and rhino conservation in the wild.

Preparation of manuscripts, stylistic and bibliographic requirements

Submissions are preferred in Word; use font: Times New Roman at 12 pt, with 1.5 spacing.

Images, figures and maps

Preferably provide figures and maps in their original form, and data in Table format; (Excel files are not accepted), maps as EPS and images should be submitted in the highest quality possible, such as TIF (330 dpi), or JPEG (300 dpi). Indicate clearly the author or source of figures, maps and photographs. Colour is acceptable. We shorten figure to ‘fig. x’ within the text, and ‘Figure x.’ in full in the caption.

Provide equations in .png format.

Title and authors

The title should contain as many of the key words as possible but should not be more than 25 words long. Follow with the name(s) of the author(s) with institutional affiliation, postal and email address of the corresponding author, to whom proofs and editorial comments will be sent.

Journal conventions


Use common names of animals and plants, giving scientific names in italics on first mention. Generally, refer to animals in the plural form (i.e. rhinos, elephants). We do not capitalize elephant, black/white rhino and greater one-horned rhino. We do capitalise Javan and Sumatran rhino.


Use British spelling, following the latest edition of the Concise Oxford dictionary or the Oxford English Dictionary, using ‘z’ instead of ‘s’ in words like ‘recognize’, ‘organization’, ‘immobilized’; but ‘analyse’, ‘paralyse’. The dictionary is available online at


Use the International System of Units for measurement (m, km, kg, ha, h) with a space between the numeral and the unit of measurement. Give measurements in figures, for example 12 mm, 1 km, 3 ha, except at the beginning of a sentence.

Spell out numbers under 10 if not a unit of measurement unless the number is part of a series containing numbers 10 or over, for example: 14 adult males, 23 adult females and 3 juveniles.

In the text, use a comma as the separator for figures four digits or more: 1,750 and 11,750. The separator will be a full stop in French papers. For equations, use font: Times New Roman at 15 pt.


We use the name-year method of citing and listing references. The punctuation and typographic style is as follows:

In the text, cite a single author: ‘(X 2005) or ‘X (2005); cite two authors: ‘(X and Y 2005)’ or ‘X and Y (2005)’; cite more than two authors ‘(X et al. 2007)’ or ‘X et al. (2007)’. Note that there is no comma between the author(s) and the year. If multiple works are being cited, separate them by a semicolon, listing them in chronological order: (X et al. 1998; B 2002; Z 2010).

In the reference list, punctuation is minimized. Journal names in full. Titles of books and papers are decapitalized.

Examples are drawn from previous issues of Pachyderm:

Article in a journal or periodical

Barnes RFW, Barnes KI, Alers MPT, Blom A. 1991. Man determines the distribution of elephants in the rain forests of north-eastern Gabon. African Journal of Ecology 29 (4): 54–63.
Hubback T. 1939. The Asiatic two-horned rhinoceros. Journal of Mammalogy 20 (1): 1–20.
Buys D. 2000. The status of the southern white rhino (Ceratotherium simum simum) on private land in South Africa in 1999. Pachyderm 28: 60–64.


Smithers RHN. 1983. Mammals of the southern African sub-region. 2nd ed. Pretoria University Press, Pretoria.
Martin EB, Vigne L. 2015. Hong Kong's ivory: more items for sale than in any other city in the world. Save the Elephants, London.

Book chapters

Barnes RFW. 1996. Estimating forest elephant abundance by dung counts. In: Kangwana K, ed. Studying elephants. AWF Technical Handbook no. 7. African Wildlife Foundation, Nairobi. pp. 33–48.

Masters /PhD thesis

Blake S. 2002. The ecology of forest elephant distribution and its implications for conservation. PhD thesis. Institute of Cell, Animal and Population Biology, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh.

Reports/unpublished reports

Adcock K. 2006. Estimates of black rhino carrying capacity at Ol Pejeta’s new rhino area. Kenya Wildlife Service, Nairobi. Unpublished. [Kindly, provide a website, location, or person from whom a report can be accessed when possible].

Web site

Elephants of Cameroon. 2000. Saving Africa’s vanishing giants, the elephants of Cameroon. [Accessed 25 February 2000].
[AfESG] African Elephant Specialist Group. 2000. Fencing and other barriers against problem elephants. AfESG Technical Brief Series. IUCN African Elephant Specialist Group, Human–Elephant Conflict Working Group (author: Richard Hoare). Available at: [Accessed 15 July 2019].
Payne J, Ahmed AH. 2012. A comment on ‘sex and the single rhinoceros’ by Henry Nichols. [Accessed 24 August 2020].

Privacy Statement

The names and email addresses entered in this journal site will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party.

Peer review process

All Research, Management, Review and History manuscripts accepted for submission in Pachyderm, go through a formal peer-review process. Peer review is the independent assessment of a research paper by experts in the relevant field, to evaluate the manuscript’s quality and suitability for publication, and its significance to advance the conservation management of wild populations of pachyderms.

Our peer review acts as a form of scientific quality control as well as checking that the use of English/French languages makes for clear readability; and gives very useful feedback for authors. This feedback can be used to improve your manuscript before it is published, alert authors to issues found, or gaps in the literature they may have overlooked. In this way, peer review is a collaborative process, where authors receive constructive input from peers to support and advance their work.

Every journal depends on the essential hard work of reviewers who test and refine each manuscript before publication.

For a specialist journal such as Pachyderm, the section editors/editor cannot be experts in the topic of every manuscript submitted. So, the feedback and comments of carefully selected reviewers are an essential guide to inform the editor’s decision on a research paper.

We choose from a list of over 300 reviewers and ask that they provide a breakdown of the pros and cons of the given manuscript to enable the author to make the appropriate changes for the manuscript's inclusion. We also ask our reviewers to recommend a rating, choosing from the following: ‘Accept submission’, ‘Revisions required’, ‘Resubmit for review’,‘Resubmit elsewhere’, ‘Decline submission’. Additional support and/or feedback on manuscripts is often, but not always, provided. Our reviewers have the option of remaining 'blind' or not.

An author must follow the reviewer's recommendations unless there is good reason not to do so. Authors are invited to respond to a reviewer’s feedback. These responses are checked by the Section Editors and Editor. It is rare that an author disregards the reviewers’ proposed improvements.

You can find more information in Information for Authors. If you have further queries, kindly contact our Managing Editor, Suzannah Goss.