African Journal of Marine Science | National Inquiry Services Centre

African Journal of Marine Science

ISSN: 1814-232X (Print)
            1814-2338 (Online)
Publication frequency: 4 issues per year

1.3 (2022) Impact Factor
2.0 (2022) 5-year IF

2.0 (2022) CiteScore (Scopus)

Accredited with the DHET (SAPSE)

Publication of the South African Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment.Co-published with Taylor & FrancisClick here for Open Access options on this journal

Aims & Scope

The African (formerly South African) Journal of Marine Science provides an international forum for the publication of original scientific contributions or critical reviews, involving oceanic, shelf or estuarine waters, inclusive of oceanography, studies of organisms and their habitats, and aquaculture. Papers on the conservation and management of living resources, relevant social science and governance, or new techniques, are all welcomed, as are those that integrate different disciplines. Priority will be given to rigorous, question-driven research, rather than descriptive research. Contributions from African waters, including the Southern Ocean, are particularly encouraged, although not to the exclusion of those from elsewhere that have relevance to the African context. Submissions may take the form of a paper or a short communication. The journal aims to achieve a balanced representation of subject areas but also publishes proceedings of symposia in dedicated issues, as well as guest-edited suites on thematic topics in regular issues.

The journal is produced by NISC in association with the Fisheries branch of the South African Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE). Acceptance of papers is the responsibility of the Editor-in-Chief in consultation with the Editors and members of the Editorial Advisory Board. All views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of the Editors or the Department. 




Sheldon Dudley
Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Cape Town, South Africa

Editorial Assistant

Hanlie Spamer
Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Cape Town, South Africa

Editorial Office

Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Cape Town, South Africa
Postal address: Private Bag X2, Rogge Bay 8012, South Africa
Street address: Martin Hammerschlag Road, Foretrust Building, Foreshore, Cape Town
Telephone: +27 (0)21 402 3145/3247
Telefax: +27 (0)21 421 7406

Manuscript Submission

All manuscripts presented in accordance with instructions to authors should be submitted online at the Taylor & Francis Submissions Portal (


Kevern L Cochrane – Rhodes University, South Africa
Janet C Coetzee – Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa
Dawit Yemane Ghebrehiwet – Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa   
Mark J Gibbons – University of the Western Cape, South Africa
Steve P Kirkman – Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa
Carl D van der Lingen – Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa
Grant C Pitcher – Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa
Merle Sowman – University of Cape Town, South Africa

Editorial Advisory Board

Manuel Barange – Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), Rome, Italy
Lynnath E Beckley – Murdoch University, Australia
John J Bolton – University of Cape Town, South Africa
George M Branch – University of Cape Town, South Africa
Peter J Britz – Rhodes University, South Africa
Kevin W Christison – Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa
Jenny A Huggett – Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa
Kwame A Koranteng – FAO, Italy
Tarron Lamont - Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa 
Matthieu Le Corre – Université de la Réunion, Réunion, France
Bruce Q Mann – Oceanographic Research Institute, South Africa
Conrad A Matthee – University of Stellenbosch, South Africa
Pedro MS Monteiro – CSIR, South Africa
Magnus AK Ngoile – University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Maria-Pilar Olivar – Instituto de Ciencias del Mar, Spain
Andrew IL Payne – Centre for Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science, UK
Lucie Penin – Université de la Réunion, La Réunion, France
Pierre A Pistorius – Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, South Africa
André Punt – University of Washington,USA
Chris JC Reason – University of Cape Town, South Africa
Claude Roy – Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, France
Toufiek Samaai – Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, South Africa
Lynne J Shannon – University of Cape Town, South Africa
Rashid U Sumaila – University of British Columbia, Canada
Jane K Turpie – University of Cape Town, South Africa
Les G Underhill – University of Cape Town, South Africa
Rudy P van der Elst – Oceanographic Research Institute, South Africa
Kuperan K Viswanathan – WorldFish Center, Malaysia
Caroline R Weir – Aberdeen University, UK
Alan K Whitfield – South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity, South Africa

Publishing Manager

Contact regarding all aspects relating to the production of the journal, including scheduling and copyright issues:

Dr Kelly-Anne Frith
NISC (Pty) Ltd
4 Speke Street
PO Box 377
Makhanda 6140
South Africa

Tel: +27 (0)46 622 9698
Fax: +27 (0)46 622 9550

Published in association with the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment:

Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment
Branch Fisheries
Private Bag X2
Rogge Bay 8012
South Africa



Latest Issue

Volume 46, Issue 1, 2024

Rapid Communication

Further insights into killer whales Orcinus orca preying on white sharks Carcharodon carcharias in South Africa
Author(s): A Towner Rhodes University, South Africa , P Micarelli University of Siena, Italy , D Hurwitz , South Africa , MJ Smale Nelson Mandela University, South Africa , AJ Booth Rhodes University, South Africa , C Stopforth , South Africa , E Jacobs , South Africa , FR Reinero Sharks Studies Centre – Scientific Institute, Italy , V Ricci Sharks Studies Centre – Scientific Institute, Italy , A Di Bari Sharks Studies Centre – Scientific Institute, Italy , S Gavazzi Sharks Studies Centre – Scientific Institute, Italy , G Carugno Sharks Studies Centre – Scientific Institute, Italy , M Mahrer Claremont McKenna College, United States , E Gennari Rhodes University, South Africa
Pages: 1–5

Research Article

Distribution and site fidelity of four endemic catshark species in Walker Bay, South Africa
Author(s): TL Johnson , South Africa , JC de Bresser , South Africa , E Cottrant , South Africa , NJ Drobniewska , South Africa , TG Paulet , South Africa , LG Underhill University of Cape Town, South Africa
Pages: 7–16
Thermal tolerances of littorinid snails from temperate and subtropical South Africa
Author(s): CD McQuaid Rhodes University, South Africa , TG Matumba Rhodes University, South Africa
Pages: 31–39
Impact of interactions between common bottlenose dolphins and purse-seiners in the Moroccan Mediterranean region: case study in the Al Hoceima fishing grounds
Author(s): M Keznine Abdelmalek Essaâdi University, Morocco , B Mghili Abdelmalek Essaâdi University, Morocco , H Awadh Abdelmalek Essaâdi University, Morocco , M Analla Abdelmalek Essaâdi University, Morocco , M Aksissou Abdelmalek Essaâdi University, Morocco
Pages: 55–64
Biology and ecology of the African blackspot shark Carcharhinus humani on the east coast of South Africa
Author(s): G Cliff KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board, South Africa , NG Booyens School of Life Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa , R Daly Oceanographic Research Institute (ORI), South Africa , GL Jordaan Oceanographic Research Institute (ORI), South Africa , N Nkabi KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board, South Africa , D Parker Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, Australia , BQ Mann Oceanographic Research Institute (ORI), South Africa
Pages: 65–76


Instructions for Authors

Submit Now

Author FAQ


Instructions for Authors

Submission and editorial policy: Submissions should be made online at the Taylor & Francis Submissions Portal. New users should first create an account. Should you have difficulty submitting material online, please notify the Editor-in-Chief, Sheldon Dudley, at

In a cover letter, the author is encouraged to suggest the names and contact addresses (including e-mail addresses) of three appropriate referees who have not been associated with the research being submitted, although the Editors will not be bound by such suggestions. Furthermore, the author must confirm in the letter that the work is original and is not currently under consideration for publication elsewhere.

Contributions must conform to the principles outlined in Ethical considerations in research publication available for download below. Submission of a manuscript implies the transfer of the copyright for the accepted article to the publisher and all those media that the publisher considers suitable for the dissemination of the work. However, the author retains the right to disseminate his/her own work. 

Maximum lengths of contributions should be 2 500 words for a Short Communication and 7 500 words for a full Research Paper, although a Review Paper of up to 12 000 words will be considered. Word counts include references but exclude tables. Short Communications are used to describe smaller pieces of completed work and should have  a combined maximum  of four figures and tables. Supplementary Information, such as questionnaires and ancillary data, can be included but will be published online only.

The Journal uses single-blind peer review, where the identity of the reviewers is unknown to the author. 

Text: 1. The entire manuscript be double-spaced - though greater spacing may be used where helpful (particularly around equations and formulas).

2. Lines should be numbered continuously.

3. All pages should be numbered with Arabic numbers.

4. Each of the following sections should be started on a new page:

  • title (informative but brief), authors' names and affiliations (with city and country), and e-mail address of the corresponding author;
  • abstract, follwed by 5 to 8 keywords or phrases that do not appear in the title and that are obtained from the whole article. 
  • text;
  • references;
  • tables;
  • legends for figures;
  • appendices (which will appear at the end of the article); Supplementary Information (which will appear online only), should be provided as a separate document.

5. The main text should follow the order: Introduction, Materials and methods, Results, Discussion, Acknowledgements and References. Review Papers would typically exclude the sections Materials and methods and Results, and might include Conclusions.

6. Headings and subheadings should not be numbered. Three levels ofheadings should be sufficient and distinguished as follows: main heading – bold; level 2 – bold italics; level 3 – italics.

7. New paragraphs should be clearly identified.

8. Only those words to be printed in italics should be shown so.

9. All measurements (linear, mass and time) should be given in numerals (not words) in the metric system. When other units of measure are preferred, authors should include metric equivalents. Metric units used and their abbreviations should be those approved by  SO (International Standards Organization), e.g. 25 mm, 16 mg ml–1

10. A document entitled Presentation of Mathematical and Statistical Data is available for download below.

11. Numbers in the text are to be spelled out if smaller than 10, but a series of numbers (including numbers smaller and larger than 10) should all be listed in numerals. In a sentence overloaded with numbers it is permissible to give certain categories in numerals and others in words. Do not begin a sentence with a numeral.

12. Use of footnotes is discouraged, but if necessary they must be numbered consecutively in the text and typed under a horizontal line at the foot of the relevant page.

Abstract: 1. Each manuscript must have an abstract, the length of which should not exceed 200 words or 3% of the paper, whichever is the lesser.

2. Subdivision into paragraphs and inclusion of  references to literature are not permitted.

3. The abstract should summarise the contents and conclusions of the paper, point to new information contained therein, and indicate the relevance of the work.

Acknowledgements: This section is to be kept brief and only special help acknowledged, as well as funders of the research. 

Tables: 1. Tables should be carefully constructed so that the data presented may be easily understood; do not to overload a table with information.

2. In constructing tables, the size of the printed publication (210 x 275 mm) should be kept in mind.

3. Each table should be provided with a descriptive caption which, together with the column headings, makes it intelligible without reference to the text.

4. Tables should be numbered consecutively in Arabic numerals.

5. Use of footnotes to tables should be minimised.

6. Magnitudes known to be nil are shown by a zero or gap, and ‘no data’ by an en-dash or in words.

7. Decimal fractions should be preceded by a zero, and columns of figures should align on the decimal marker. Integers are to be aligned on the least-significant digit. A space should be used separate thousands (groups of three digits), but such spacing does not apply to dates.

8. Tables and figures do not normally duplicate one another. Select the most appropriate presentation, e.g. graphs for trends.

9. Each table should be referred to in sequence in the text and described.

Figures: 1. All illustrations, whether black and white drawings, graphs, photographs (colour or monochrome) or charts, are to be designated as figures. Colour will be used only when essential.

2. Figures must be numbered consecutively in Arabic numerals and mentioned by number in sequence in the text.

3. A legend and key (if required) should be provided for each figure, which, together with the illustration, should make the whole intelligible without reference to the text.

4. Small illustrations may be grouped together on a page, the parts then being identified by small letters, e.g. Figure 1a, 1b. The legend should be written to correspond to these.

5. Figures are to be prepared to fit a maximum width of either 84 mm (single column) or 176 mm (double column) on the printed page. The size, line thickness and spacing of the lettering, lines and data points should take into account the final size of the illustration. For graphs and diagrams, lines should be 0.5 point with lettering in 9 point Arial.

6. Illustrations where the size of the object shown is important should have a metric bar-scale drawn on them, or else the actual size may be mentioned in the legend.

7. Care should be taken so that figures are not overcrowded with information. Alternately, information that can easily be depicted in a single figure should not be given in several.

8. Graphs, histograms, charts and similar matter should be boxed (i.e. enclosed on all four sides). Data points, regression formulae, sample sizes, confidence limits, adequate graduations, etc. may be included wherever needed.

Graphics and illustrations: 1. Authors must ensure that their figures conform to the style of the Journal. Pay particular attention to line thickness, font and figure proportions, taking into account the Journal’s printed page size (210 × 275 mm). Costs of redrawing figures may be charged. Please refer to Figure Guidelines for Authors available for download below. 

2. For digital photographs or scanned images the resolution should be at least 300 dpi for colour or greyscale artwork and a minimum of 600 dpi for black line drawings. These can be saved (in order of preference) in PSD, JPEG, PDF or EPS format.

3. Graphs, charts or maps should be exported to AI, PDF, EMF, SVG, WMF or EPS format. In this way the vector format is preserved, allowing for minor changes to be made by the publisher; where necessary MS Office files (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) are also acceptable, but DO NOT EMBED Excel graphs or PowerPoint slides in an MS Word document, which can render them impossible to edit. Rather send the original Excel or PowerPoint files. More detailed technical information is given in the documents Figure Guidelines for Authors and Figure FAQs*.

Species nomenclature: First use of a species name in the title, abstract, and main text should include the common name (where available) and scientific name, but not the describing authority or date of authorship. Upon first mention in the text, the describing authority may also be included for works with taxonomic relevance, and a comma should separate the authority from the date. The author’s citation should follow the rules of either the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature or the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants, as appropriate. For zoological species, note the correct use of parentheses when citing the naming authority and date: without parentheses if the current accepted genus and species name is as given by the original naming author, e.g. Dotilla fenestrata Hilgendorf, 1869; or within parentheses if the current accepted scientific name differs from that originally given, e.g. Scylla serrata Forsskål, 1775. For botanical species, where there is a new combination of genus and specific name, both the author(s) of the original genus placement and those of the new combination are given, with the former in parentheses. In the remainder of the manuscript, just one name (scientific or common) should be used, but preferably the scientific name. A genus name can be abbreviated to a single letter (e.g. P. rupestris) other than (a) at the beginning of a sentence, where the full name should be used, or (b) where there are multiple genera with the same first letter, in which case the first two letters may be used.

References: 1. Reference to literature cited in text could be as follows: ‘Griffiths (2000) showed that...’ or ‘...intense plankton production (Carr 2002)’. 

2. An unpublished book or article that has been accepted for publication can be listed in the references followed by the notation in press. However, only those manuscripts that are in page-proof stage or for which there is an acceptance letter can be considered in press. As much information as possible is to be given about the intended manner of publication, e.g. name of journal and issue no. If an article is in preparation, or submitted but yet not accepted, state the name and affiliation of the author of the material followed by the notation ‘unpublished data’ in the text and do not include it in the references list. Reference to ‘pers. comm.’ is allowed.

3. In-text citations of works with two authors should be given as, e.g. Barange and Pillar (1992); works with more than two authors should be given as the first author followed by et al., e.g. Payne et al. (1982).

4. A direct quotation from a reference should list the page quoted and be enclosed in quotation marks. Spelling, punctuation and wording must match the original; a mistake in the original may be pointed out by inserting [sic].

5. Works quoted in the text but not actually seen should be given in the form e.g. Ratcliffe (1991) as cited by Dallas and Day (1993). Such literature (in this case, Ratcliffe 1991) should not be listed in the reference list.

6. Only literature actually cited in the text is to be included in the References list, which should strictly only include works published or accepted for publication. However, listings of theses (doctoral and masters only) and symposium presentations are permitted. For acceptable reference types, see the document Reference Exemplars for Authors*.

7. The list of references at the end should be provided in alphabetical order of first authors. Within a group of publications with the same first author, the sequence is as follows: (i) single-author publications, listed chronologically; (ii) two-author publications, listed alphabetically on the second author and then chronologically; and (iii) publications with two or more co-authors, listed chronologically only.

8. For multi-author references with more than seven authors, the first six should be listed and the existence of additional authors should be indicated by ‘et al.’ For references with seven authors, all seven should be listed.

9. The use of Anon. for author should be avoided by using a corporate name instead (e.g. FAO), except in the case of a newspaper or magazine article with no named author.

10. Journal titles must be provided in full.

11. Works quoted in a language different from that of the original publication are to be identified as such in parentheses at the end of the reference, e.g. (translated from Russian). Titles of works written in non-Roman characters are to be transliterated and the fact noted by appending e.g. (in Japanese) or (in Russian, with English abstract).

12. Internet references should include either the full URL of the site accessed together with the date of access, or the article digital object identifier (doi). A doi and date of access are not required for journal articles published online.

13. Examples (also refer to Reference Exemplars for Authors available for download below).

Christensen V, Walters CJ. In press. Trade-offs in ecosystem-scale optimization of fisheries management policies. Bulletin of Marine Science.

FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization). 2002. The state of world fisheries and aquaculture. Rome: FAO Fisheries Department.

Griffiths MH. 2000a. Long-term trends in catch and effort of commercial linefish off South Africa’s Cape Province: snapshots of the 20th century. South African Journal of Marine Science 22: 81–110.

Griffiths MH. 2000b. Atractoscion aequidens. In: Mann BQ (ed.), Southern African marine linefish status reports. Special Publication No. 7. Durban: Oceanographic Research Institute. pp 83–84.

Hall S (ed.). 1999. The effects of fishing on marine ecosystems and ecology. Oxford: Blackwell. 

Casper BM, Domingo A, Gaibor N, Heupel MR, Kotas E, Lamónaca AF et al. 2005. Sphyrna zygaena. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2005: e.T39388A10193797.

Winker H, Kerwath SE, Attwood CG. 2012. Report on stock assessments of important South African linefish resources. Linefish Scientific Working Group Report LSWG/Feb2012#3. Cape Town, South Africa: Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

Whittington PA. 2002. Survival and movements of African penguins, especially after oiling. PhD thesis, University of Cape Town, South Africa.

Page charges: Attention is drawn to the fact that contributions submitted to the journal will be liable for charges at the following rates: ZAR250 per page for African contributors (excl. VAT for South Africa) or USD21 per page for other contributors. Illustrations can be reproduced in colour, but only when essential, and subject to approval by the Editor-in-Chief. Non-essential use of colour will be charged at ZAR900 (excl. VAT) per page for African contributors and USD75 per page for contributors from elsewhere. Authors who do not receive subsidies from their institutions may apply to the publisher to have their page charges waived.

Reprints: Authors will be notified via e-mail when their article is available for download from the Journal website.

Open access: African Journal of Marine Science is a hybrid journal which allows authors the option of publishing their article Open Access for a set fee. Further details are given in Gold Open Access Procedure Document available from the NISC Open Access Page



Figure Guidelines for Authors

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Figure FAQs

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