African Journal of Herpetology

ISSN: 2156-4574 (Print)
            2153-3660 (Online)
Publication frequency: 2 issues per year

Impact Factor: 0.81 (2019)
5-year Impact Factor: 0.709

Accredited with the DHET (SAPSE)

Official publication of the Herpetological Association of Africa (HAA)

Co-published with Taylor & FrancisClick here for Open Access options on this journal


Aims & Scope

African Journal of Herpetology (AJH)  serves as an outlet for original research on the biology of African amphibians and reptiles. AJH is an interdisciplinary journal that publishes original articles and reviews from diverse fields and disciplines, such as conservation, phylogenetics, evolution, systematics, performance, physiology, ecology, behavioural ecology, ethology, and morphology.

The Journal publishes two issues a year. There are no page charges .

Peer Review Statement 
African Journal of Herpetology is an international, peer-reviewed journal which publishes high quality, original research contributions to scientific knowledge. All manuscript submissions are subject to initial appraisal by the Editor-in-Chief, and, if found suitable for further consideration, to peer review by independent, anonymous expert referees. All peer review is double blind and submission is online via ScholarOne Manuscripts.



Editorial board


Prof Ché Weldon 

Natural and Agricultural Sciences, 
North West-University, 
South Africa

Associate Editors 

Jessica da Silva – South African National Biodiversity Institute, Cape Town, South Africa
Ed Stanley – Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville, Florida, USA
Shelley Edwards – Rhodes University, Grahamstown South Africa
Courtney Cook – North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa 
Luis Ceríaco – Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania, USA

Editorial Committee

Aaron Bauer – USA 
David Blackburn – USA 
Ed Netherlands – RSA 
Jeanne Tarrant – RSA 
Krystal Tolley – RSA 
Stefan Lötters – Germany 
Trent Garner – UK 
Martin Whiting – Australia 


Instructions for Authors

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Author FAQ


Instructions for Authors

Thank you for choosing to submit your paper to us. These instructions will ensure we have everything required so your 

paper can move through peer review, production and publication smoothly. Please take the time to read and follow them as closely as possible, as doing so will ensure your paper matches the journal's requirements. For general guidance on the publication process at Taylor & Francis please visit our Author Services website

This journal uses ScholarOne Manuscripts (previously Manuscript Central) to peer review manuscript submissions. Please read the guide for ScholarOne authors before making a submission. Complete guidelines for preparing and submitting your manuscript to this journal are provided below.

Manuscript Submission and Handling

Submission of a manuscript implies that the work has not been published before, that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, and that authors and any co-authors abide by the ethical guidelines of the journal (see below). Manuscripts must be submitted through ScholarOne:, or via email in the case of an unreliable internet connection. Manuscripts are all peer-reviewed by a minimum of two reviewers.

Manuscript Categories

African Journal of Herpetology publishes original work in the following categories:

Original articles.— are full-length manuscripts exceeding 10 pages of double spaced text.

Short communications.— are more concise reports less than 10 pages in length that lack headings, with the exception of Abstract, Acknowledgements and Literature Cited. Note that short communications do have abstracts.

Reviews (including mini-reviews).— may be solicited by the editor. Reviews should be within the aims and scope of the journal and include original commentary and/or insight on a coherent topic. Authors wishing to submit a review are advised to contact the editor prior to submission. Mini-reviews are less than 10 pages of double spaced text.

Manuscript Format

Cover sheet.— (required for all contributions; please follow carefully) includes manuscript title; a suggested running header; 5–8 key words; and number of pages, tables, and figures. To facilitate double-blind reviewing, DO NOT include names or addresses of authors.

Text.— should be typewritten in English (UK spelling), double-spaced and left justified. Words should not be divided at the right-hand margin. Use the active voice in the first person where possible. The passive voice is your enemy and should not be used. Authors should consult the Council of Biology Editors Style Manual, 5th edition (1994) for style and abbreviations. Sentences should be separated by a single space (character). Genus and species names should be italicised. Centre major headings in small caps. Subheadings are in bold and left justified ( also in title case). Footnotes are not accepted. The International System of Units (Systeme Internationale; SI) should be followed. Use decimal points rather than commas. Measures should be in mm, m or km rather than cm or dm. Integers less than 10 should be spelt, while those greater than 10 (including 10) should be given numerically. Group integers of thousands together with a space and do not use a comma (e.g. 10 500 and 1 230). All statistical symbols should be italicised. Follow the Fourth Edition (1999) of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature. Original articles should be arranged as follows: Abstract, Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results, Discussion, Acknowledgements, and References. Appendices, Material Examined, Tables, legends to Figures, and Figures must follow the References. Supplementary Electronic Material (SEM) should be submitted as a separate file. The Abstract should not exceed 300 words and must be in English, although a translation in French or other local language is encouraged.

The Introduction should be concise and provide the aims and context of the study in relation to other work done in the same field, but should not give an exhaustive review of the literature. Materials and Methods should provide sufficient information to allow the study to be replicated. Results should be presented with clarity and precision. Discussion should deal with the interpretation of the results, pointing out their significance with reference to the reason for undertaking the research.

Short communications follow the sequence of a major article, but lack major headings, with the exception of Abstract, Acknowledgements and References.

Reviews follow the sequence of an original article but major headings may be determined by the author.

Acknowledgements should be brief and should not list titles and institutions, but should include the first name and surname in full. Institutions should only be listed where individuals are cited as pers. comm. in the text. Authors must acknowledge collecting permits and animal care protocols together with which author they were granted. Any mention of authors should refer to them by initials only (e.g. GJA for Graham J. Alexander). To facilitate double-blind reviewing, DO NOT include Acknowledgements in the original online submission.

References should be listed in alphabetical order and should refer only to publications cited in the text. References should be in the following format:

Chapter in a collection: BRUFORD, M.W., O. HANOTTE, J.F.Y. BROOKWELD & T. BURKE. 1992. Singlelocus and multilocus DNA Fingerprinting. In A.R. HOEZEL (ED.), The South American Herpetofauna: Its Origin, Evolution, and Dispersal. Molecular Genetic Analysis in Conservation. IRL Press, Oxford.

Thesis: RUSSELL, A.P. 1972. The foot of gekkonid lizards: a study in comparative and functional anatomy. Unpubl PhD Thesis, Department of Biology, Queen Elizabeth College, University of London. Iv-367p.

Book: SPAWLS, S., K. HOWELL, R. DREWES & J. ASHE. 2002. A field guide to the reptiles of East Africa. Academic Press, London.

Article: BAUER, A.M., W.R. BRANCH&W.D. HAACKE. 1993. The herpetofauna of the Kamanjab area and adjacent Damaraland, Namibia. Madoqua 18: 117—145.

Website: WILGENBUSCH, J.C., D.L. WARREN & D.L. SWOFFORD. 2004. AWTY: a system for graphical exploration of MCMC convergence in Bayesian phylogenetic inference. (accessed 15 April 2011). 

Formatting should be achieved with paragraph settings rather than tabs or spaces. Literature citations should be in chronological order: (Jacobs 1952, 1966; Edwards & Holmes 1965; Rosen et al. 1990). When a paper with more than two authors is cited, only the first appears in the text (Taylor et al. 1993). If a paper has more than ten authors, only the first five should appear in the references followed by et al.  Cite unpublished data as e.g. Alexander (in press), which then appears in the list of references, or as G. J. Alexander (pers. comm.), in which case Graham J. Alexander’s name and institutional affiliation should appear under Acknowledgements. Unpublished reports are cited as personal communications. Abbreviate journal names in the References in the standard way. Standard abbreviations can be found at various websites or

Tables.— should be in Arabic numerals, double spaced and on separate pages with a legend at the top. Lines should only be used to separate headings. Table formatting is most convenient when ‘table commands’ are used to separate columns. Do not use vertical lines. Tables should be composed with the limitations of the journal page size in mind. 

Figures.— must be restricted to the minimum needed to clarify the text. All figures should be prepared for printing to fit 120 mm (column width) by up to 150 mm in length (full page). The same data should not be presented in both graph and table form. All figures and tables must be mentioned in the text. All figures must be numbered consecutively (Arabic numerals). Computer prepared photographic images must have a minimum resolution of 350 dpi at the final publication size, colour figures minimum 600 dpi. Lower resolutions are not acceptable. Avoid the use of colour and tints for purely aesthetic reasons. Colour artwork will be reproduced in colour online. Colour reproduction in print will incur a charge of £500 for the first page and £250 for any subsequent pages. Files should be saved and submitted as one of the following file formats: TIFF (Tagged Image File Format; preferred), PostScript or EPS (Encapsulated PostScript), and should contain all the necessary font information and the source file of the application (e.g. CorelDraw/Mac, CorelDraw/PC). Please submit line art as CorelDraw, Adobe Illustrator or EPS files. These must be at a minimum resolution of 800 dpi at publication size. High resolution may be necessary where fine line detail is present. Labelling in figures should be in Times New Roman where possible. Issues from 2010 (vol. 59) should be consulted for format and style. Always use the latest available issue for instructions. Photographs may not be credited in the figure legend, but the photographer may be mentioned in the Acknowledgements.

Statement on ethics.— Authors are required to adhere to the African Journal of Herpetology statement on ethics. This can be found on the AJH  website or when submitting a manuscript on ScholarOne. 

DNA Sequence Registration.— Authors must deposit sequences referred to in African Journal of Herpetology in EMBL or GenBank Nucleotide Sequence Databases. Sequence accession numbers should be included in submitted manuscripts.

New Zoological Taxa.—If your paper introduces new zoological taxa at family-group level or below you will be prompted to register your paper with ZooBank at proof stage in order to validate electronic publication of these taxa. Individual new taxa need not be registered before publication; this can be done subsequently should you wish. After publication, you will need to amend your ZooBank record of your paper to reflect the date of publication.


Huth, E.J., M Brogan, B.P. Dancik, T. Kommedahl, D.E Nadziejka, P Robinson & W. Swanson. 1994. Scientific Style and Format: The CBE Manual for Authors, Editors, and Publishers. 6th ed. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. INTERNATIONAL COMMISSION ON ZOOLOGICAL NOMENCLATURE. 1999. International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, Fourth Edition. International Trust for Zoological Nomenclature, London.

References in Articles 
We encourage the use of a tool such as EndNote or Reference Manager for reference management and formatting.


It is a condition of publication that authors assign copyright or license the publication rights in their articles, including abstracts, to the Herpetological Association of Africa. This enables us to ensure full copyright protection and to disseminate the article, and of course the Journal, to the widest possible readership in print and electronic formats as appropriate. Authors retain many rights under the Taylor & Francis rights policies, which can be found at Authors are themselves responsible for obtaining permission to reproduce copyright material from other sources.

Article e-prints

Authors will receive 50 complimentary e-prints of their published article to distribute to their colleagues and promote their work.  

Open access 

Taylor & Francis Open Select provides authors or their research sponsors and funders with the option of paying a publishing fee and thereby making an article permanently available for free online access – open access – immediately on publication to anyone, anywhere, at any time. This option is made available once an article has been accepted in peer review.
Full details of our Open Access programme:



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