ecology

[ ih-kol-uh-jee ]
/ ɪˈkɒl ə dʒi /

noun, plural e·col·o·gies for defs 2, 3.

the branch of biology dealing with the relations and interactions between organisms and their environment, including other organisms.
the set of relationships existing between organisms and their environment: desert ecologies.
the set of relationships existing between any complex system and its surroundings or environment: the ecology and politics of healthcare.
Also called human ecology. the branch of sociology concerned with the spacing and interdependence of people and institutions.
advocacy for the protection of natural resources from pollution or its effects; environmentalism.
Also Archaic, oe·col·o·gy.

Origin of ecology

1870–75; earlier oecology < German Ökologie < Greek oîk(os) “house, dwelling” + -o- + German -logie -logy; term introduced by E. H. Haeckel

Related forms

Can be confused

biosphere ecology ecosystem environment habitat
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ecological

British Dictionary definitions for ecological (1 of 2)

ecological

/ (ˌiːkəˈlɒdʒɪkəl) /

adjective

of or relating to ecology
(of a practice, policy, product, etc) tending to benefit or cause minimal damage to the environment

Derived Forms

ecologically, adverb

British Dictionary definitions for ecological (2 of 2)

ecology

/ (ɪˈkɒlədʒɪ) /

noun

the study of the relationships between living organisms and their environment
the set of relationships of a particular organism with its environment
the study of the relationships between human groups and their physical environment
Also called (for senses 1, 2): bionomics

Derived Forms

ecologist, noun

Word Origin for ecology

C19: from German Ökologie, from Greek oikos house (hence, environment)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medicine definitions for ecological

ecology

[ ĭ-kŏlə-jē ]

n.

The branch of science that is concerned with the relationships between organisms and their environments.
The relationship between organisms and their environments.
The study of the detrimental effects of modern civilization on the environment, with a view toward their prevention or reversal through conservation.

Related forms

e′co•logi•cal (ē′kə-lŏjĭ-kəl, ĕk′ə-) null adj.e•colo•gist n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for ecological

ecology

[ ĭ-kŏlə-jē ]

The scientific study of the relationships between living things and their environments. Also called bionomics
A system of such relationships within a particular environment.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Culture definitions for ecological

ecology


The study of living things, their environment, and the relation between the two.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.