What is history of ecology?

History of ecology with dates

Ecosystem simply means ‘ecological systems’.  Ecology is defined as the study of ecosystems.  Ecologists study the interaction of all organisms in an ecosystem. The study includes complex interactions between thousands of plants and animals to the role of microbes living beneath the soil and the effects of the rainforest on the Earth’s atmosphere.

Ecology is a science (branch of Biology) that studies living things; and their interactions with the environment where they live. It is a word derived from Greek, where “oikos” means house and “logos” means study.

Ecology is a branch of biology concerned with understanding how organisms relate to each other and to their environment.  This branch of biology is primarily concerned with the relationships between organisms, their relationships with each other, their relationships towards shared resources, their relationships with the space they share, and even their relationships with non-living aspects of the environment.

Ernst Haeckel

Ecology evolved from the natural history of the ancient Greek philosophers, such as Hippocrates, Aristotle, and Theophrastus, laying the foundations of ecology in their studies of natural history. The later foundations for modern ecology were laid in the early work of plant and animal physiologists. Evolutionary concepts of adaptation and natural selection became cornerstones of modern ecological theory, transforming it into a more rigorous science in the 19th century. It is closely related to evolutionary biology, genetics and ethology. Understanding how biodiversity affects ecological function is an important area of focus in ecological studies.

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Haeckel originally understood ecology as the science that studies the relationships of living things to their environment, but later extended this definition to the study of the characteristics of the environment, which also includes the transport of matter and energy, and their transformation by biological communities.

Paul r. ehrlich

The term ecology was first used by the German zoologist Ernst Haeckel (1869); however, this science has its origins in other sciences such as biology, geology and evolution, among others.

There are important theories in the construction of this field of study, Lamarck with his first theory of evolution, proposed that the environment is in constant transformation, so organisms need to change and make an effort to achieve it, this being a mechanism of evolution and one of the main bases of ecology, taking into account the relationships of organisms and their environment.

On the other hand, not only organisms change and evolve, but also the earth’s crust. The English geologist Charles Lyell found that the earth’s crust is the result of gradual changes throughout the planet’s history. Giving way to the transformation of ecosystems and their functions.

Modern ecology actually had its beginnings with the development of Darwin’s theory of evolution. He observed that the environment is constantly changing, which causes the organisms with the best adaptations to survive by the mechanism of natural selection. He emphasized the importance of the interaction of organisms with their environment.Ecology from Haeckel onwards. Although ecology was born in the 19th century, with the work of Haeckel, ecology began to flourish properly in the 20th century, when the first ecological societies and ecological journals appeared. Haeckel’s definition has been the subject of somewhat different and perhaps more profound interpretations since 1900. For example, the English ecologist Charles Elton defined ecology as the “scientific natural history” concerned with the “sociology and economy of animals”. An American specialist in plant ecology, Frederick Clements, considered ecology to be “the science of the community,” and contemporary American ecologist Eugene Odum has defined it, perhaps too broadly, as “the study of the structure and function of nature.”

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Henry chandler cowles

Man has always had a need to understand the environment around him; especially in the period before the Industrial Revolution, when the majority of the population lived in the rural world, understanding the interactions of organisms with each other and with their environment could make a big difference in people’s lives. We are all familiar with superstitions and sayings that try to explain the weather, life cycles and so on. However, if we want to know the existing relationships in the natural world, we must pay attention to science, and in particular to ecology. In EcologíaVerde we offer you the opportunity to learn more about the history of ecology.

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We begin by talking about the historical background of ecology and the most relevant precursors. The history of ecology begins with the first civilizations and the first philosophers. The philosophers Hippocrates and Aristotle laid the foundations of modern biology, Hippocrates being more focused on medical issues and Aristotle on natural history.Aristotle was concerned with describing and classifying a huge number of living organisms, including both animals and plants, as well as trying to explain other phenomena such as fertilization, embryo development, the soul (or what confers life to living beings) or the origin of life. The body of knowledge issued by Aristotle was not only tremendously broad, but also laid the foundations for the systematic study of living beings and nature.