ecology

noun
ecol·​o·​gy | \ i-ˈkä-lə-jē How to pronounce ecology (audio) , e-\
plural ecologies

Definition of ecology

1 : a branch of science concerned with the interrelationship of organisms and their environments
2 : the totality or pattern of relations between organisms and their environment
4 : environment, climate the moral ecology also : an often delicate or intricate system or complex the ecology of language

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Other Words from ecology

ecologist \ i-​ˈkä-​lə-​jist How to pronounce ecologist (audio) , e-​ \ noun

Examples of ecology in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

What’s needed are investments in tick biology and ecology, and investigations into how ticks arrive in new territory and what carries them around. Maryn Mckenna, WIRED, "The Terrifying Unknowns of an Exotic Invasive Tick," 28 June 2019 The River Learning Center and Proposed National Park Service Headquarters in Crosby Farm Regional Park that will be a year-round gateway to the Mississippi that promote stewardship of the river’s culture, history and ecology. Katrina Pross, Twin Cities, "Great River Passage Conservancy announces new director, campaign," 25 June 2019 The top floor is dedicated to helping visitors plan their visit, and the lower level is for learning about the history and ecology of the parks. Rachel Berry, Cincinnati.com, "Hikers rejoice: New Hocking Hills visitors' center features exhibits and indoor bathrooms," 24 June 2019 Since the 1980s, the group’s writings have emphasized the heterogeneity of Caribbean history, the fundamental contiguity of life and literature with ecology, and a tradition of oral storytelling that has become the touchstone of Chamoiseau’s oeuvre. New York Times, "Fleeing a Caribbean Plantation Into a Mythic Wilderness," 27 June 2018 Alastair Grant, professor of ecology at University of East Anglia in the UK, also criticized the study's scope. Susan Scutti, CNN, "You're probably ingesting more than 70,000 microplastic particles each year, study says," 5 June 2019 Their movements may have consequences for ecology, agriculture, and human health. Diana Gitig, Ars Technica, "Ahh, summer—ramlibacter season," 14 Nov. 2018 Houses compete to produce the most eye-catching, inventive and flamboyant show invitations delivered often by gas-guzzling courier to each guest’s personal or professional address with little thought to ecology. Thomas Adamson, The Seattle Times, "Starry Saint Laurent show in Paris sees models walk on water," 25 Sep. 2018 Which is exactly what’s on the horizon for Potts, and for paleogeologists like Andrew Cohen, a professor of geosciences, ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Arizona who has worked with Potts in the past. Lorraine Boissoneault, Smithsonian, "Colored Pigments and Complex Tools Suggest Humans Were Trading 100,000 Years Earlier Than Previously Believed," 16 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ecology.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of ecology

1875, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ecology

German Ökologie, from öko- eco- + -logie -logy

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Statistics for ecology

Last Updated

11 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ecology

The first known use of ecology was in 1875

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More Definitions for ecology

ecology

noun

English Language Learners Definition of ecology

: a science that deals with the relationships between groups of living things and their environments
: the relationships between a group of living things and their environment

ecology

noun
ecol·​o·​gy | \ i-ˈkä-lə-jē How to pronounce ecology (audio) \

Kids Definition of ecology

1 : a branch of science concerned with the relationships between living things and their environment
2 : the pattern of relationships between living things and their environment

ecology

noun
ecol·​o·​gy | \ -jē How to pronounce ecology (audio) \
plural ecologies

Medical Definition of ecology

1 : a branch of science concerned with the interrelationship of organisms and their environments
2 : the totality or pattern of relations between organisms and their environment

Other Words from ecology

ecological \ ˌē-​kə-​ˈläj-​i-​kəl How to pronounce ecological (audio) , ˌek-​ə-​ How to pronounce ecological (audio) \ also ecologic \ -​ik How to pronounce ecologic (audio) \ adjective
ecologically \ -​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce ecologically (audio) \ adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on ecology

Spanish Central: Translation of ecology

Nglish: Translation of ecology for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ecology for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about ecology

Comments on ecology

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