About the Journal

Focus and Scope

Kukila accepts manuscripts on all aspects of Indonesian ornithology for publication, provided that they are offered solely to Kukila. Papers covering immediately adjacent territories (e.g. Sabah, Sarawak, Timor-Leste and Papua New Guinea) and seas will also be considered if they relate to the Indonesian avifauna.

Paper Categories.

  • Full Articles: 2,000-7,000 words in length, and generally present detailed new information on the biology (e.g. ecology or behaviour) or status of particular bird species, or on the avifauna of a poorly-known region of Indonesia, with reference to all relevant literature. A summary is required.
  • Short Communications: Less than 2,000 words in length, and may include less detailed observations of single species, or records that constitute the first of a species for a province or large island, providing authors furnish an adequate description of the bird’s appearance, habitat, location (if possible, geographical coordinates) and calls (if heard), as well as a thorough review of the literature. A short summary is required.
  • Around the Archipelago presents recent Indonesian records of bird species that are poorly known or rarely observed, as well as breeding records and records of recapture or recovery of birds banded or re-trapped in Indonesia. Author’s initials appear in brackets after the record, and their full names are given at the end of the report.  Please send your observation to us.

Peer Review Process

Manuscripts sent to Kukila are subject to peer review. External peer-review is typically done by regional ornithological experts and is an important process to provide an unbiased opinion on the significance of the manuscript and whether it is suitable for publication. Usually two referees are selected. Referees use their personal time to examine the manuscript, and provide a report to editors usually within 10-30 days of receipt of the manuscript. They may or may not annotate a copy of the manuscript. Delays may occur in the review process if referees are in the field or otherwise do not have time to accept a review. The editors then assess comments by referees, and determine actions needed by the author to enable the manuscript to progress towards being accepted for publication. Revised manuscripts should be returned within 30 days of receipt of the referees’ report, and must be accompanied by a letter – preferably in point form - explaining how the author(s) have addressed each of the issues raised by the referees. Poorly prepared manuscripts may be rejected, or require substantial effort to reach a suitable standard.  The editors reserve the right to carry out non-technical, editorial alterations, without reference to the authors. At their discretion editors may provide additional assistance to enable these articles to meet a suitable standard. Poorly researched manuscripts, or those that are not revised according to the editor’s instructions can be a burden to editors due to their limited time. In such cases editors may suggest co-authorship.

Publication Frequency

As of 1 January 2017, Kukila will publish articles as soon as the reviewing and editing process has been finalised.

Open Access Policy

This journal provides immediate open access to its content in order to increase our understanding of Indonesian birds and to promote the growth of Indonesian ornithology.


Sources of Support

Over recent years Kukila has received generous and consistent support from the Oriental Bird Club. Without this support we would never have made it this far! We thank the OBC sincerely.

Journal History

Kukila began its life in 1975 as an essentially avicultural journal, published under the auspices of the Indonesian Ornithological Society (IOS). Although Volume 1 comprised three issues, many years passed before the journal was resurrected in 1985, by which time Volume 1 was out of print. The next three volumes (Vols. 2-5, each comprising two to four issues) were printed as supplements to Voice of Nature, a nature conservation magazine published monthly by Yayasan Indonesia Hijau (Green Indonesia Foundation). Under the strong co-editorship of Derek Holmes and Prof Somadikarta, Kukila quickly established itself as the first regional ornithological journal in Southeast Asia, with an international reputation as the leading source of up-to-date information on Indonesian birds. The IOS took full control of the journal again in 1992, and Volume 6 saw the inclusion of three assistant editors (Paul Andrew, Bas van Balen and David Bishop), as well as an Advisory Board and two Production editors.

Kukila was published annually up to and including 2000 (Vol. 11), the year in which Derek Holmes tragically died. Having lost its senior editor, and a major contributor, the journal went into “limbo” as if mourning the loss of one of Indonesia’s most productive ornithologists and a formidable champion of conservation. Kukila was about to enter its next stage of development, involving a major change in appearance and format. Yet it took fully three years to prepare Volume 12 (2003). In 2004 ownership of the journal was officially transferred by Dr Made Sri Prana (Chairman, IOS) to the newly-fledged Indonesian Ornithologists Union (IdOU), but sadly, the next two volumes (13 and 14) were just as slow at fledging (2006 and 2009, respectively) as the previous volume, largely due to the excessive work commitments of the current editors. This irregularity in production undoubtedly reduced confidence in Kukila among readers and potential contributors.

Through the last decade, a major problem with publishing Kukila has been the costs of publication and distribution. During the editorial reign of Derek Holmes, non-government institutions had borne these costs, chief among them BirdLife International, to which Kukila owes a debt of gratitude. Publication of volumes 12 and 13 was made possible through the generous financial support of the Gibbon Foundation and Mr Joost Brouwer. The current editors are also very grateful to the Oriental Bird Club for donating the proceeds of UK sales of Kukila, which contributed significantly to the publication of Volume 14.

Given that Kukila had become a financial burden on the limited resources of its sponsors and IdOU, it was decided early in 2011 that Volume 15 should be published online, thereby avoiding printing costs. Although doubtless some will bemoan the loss of a printed journal, the editors believe that online publication will make the journal more accessible to more ornithologists both within and outside Indonesia. Moreover we are committed to making Kukila an annual bulletin again - just as it was in its heyday, with Derek at the helm. This may entail a decrease in the number of pages in future issues, but we believe that annual publication will increase confidence in the journal and hopefully the rate of manuscript submission.

Joint Editors-In-Chief

Prof. Dr. Ani Mardiastuti and Dr. S. (Bas) van Balen