Publication Trends in The Canadian Field-Naturalist, 1980–2015


  • William D. Halliday Department of Biology University of Victoria 3800 Finnerty Rd Victoria, British Columbia, Canada V8P 5C2



meta-analysis, natural history, publication trends, temporal trends


I examined publication trends for The Canadian Field-Naturalist (CFN) between 1980 and 2015 to determine whether a general decrease in natural history studies has been affecting CFN. I also establish a baseline of the types of authors that publish in CFN, and the types of studies that are typically published. Fewer but longer articles are being published every year. More authors per article with greater collaboration are publishing every year. The majority of authors are Canadian, but a large number of authors are from the USA. The majority of studies focus on vertebrates, and most of these focus on mammals, followed by birds, and then fish. Articles on basic biology are most common, although articles on conservation and species’ geographic ranges are also common. CFN remains an important outlet for basic biology and conservation studies, and despite the decreasing trends in the number of articles published per year, CFN will likely remain a keystone publication for natural history in Canada.