History of ecology, Biology

History of Ecology

The roots of ecology lie in Natural History, which is as old as human civilisation itself. As a matter of fact man indulged in ecology in a practical sort of way, though unknowingly, since early history. In primitive societies every individual was required to have intimate knowledge of his environment for survival, i.e., of the forces of nature and of plants and animals around him. Primitive tribes, which were dependent on hunting, fishing and food gathering needed detailed knowledge of their environment to obtain their sustenance. Later, the adoption of settled agricultural life further stressed the need to learn practical ecology for the successful domestication of plants and animals. Our ancient Indian texts are full of references to ecological principles. The classical texts of the Vedic period (1500 BC-600 BC) such as the Vedas, the Samhitas, the Brahmanas and the Aranyakas-Upanishads contain many references to ecological concepts.

Theophrastus (370-250 BC) was the first person to introduce ecological approach long before the term ecology was coined. He studied plant types and forms in relation to altitude, moisture and light exposure.

After a gap of several centuries European mWsts made significant contribution to ecological thinking. The French Naturalist Georges Buffon (1707-1788) in his book Natural History (1756) made a serious attempt to systematise the knowledge concerning the relation of animals to environment.

In the early eighteenth century Anton-van Leeuwenhoek (1632-1723), the microscopist, pioneered the study of food chain and population regulation which have grown into the major areas of modern ecology.

In 1935 a distinguished British botanist, Sir Arthur Tansley introduced the concept of the ecosystem or ecological system. This was a major development in the history of ecology.

By the 1940s there was sufficient ecological infornation of the descriptive and observational kind. There was now a need for precise determination of the behaviour and distribution of plants (individually or in groups) in relation to specific environmental factors. This led to the experimental approach (1940- 1965). Extensive synecological studies were canied out on forest and grassland communities and autecological studies on trees, herbs hd grasses under the guidance of Prof. R. Misra, who established a flourishing school of ecology at the Banaras Hindu University, by the 1960s.

Posted Date: 12/10/2012 4:04:58 AM | Location : United States







Related Discussions:- History of ecology, Assignment Help, Ask Question on History of ecology, Get Answer, Expert's Help, History of ecology Discussions

Write discussion on History of ecology
Your posts are moderated
Related Questions
Explain the Disadvantages of tissue punch - There is a loss of keratini-ed tissue and this can lead to a compromised soft tissue barrier in cases where there is deficiency of a

Do the arteries that carry blood from the heart to the lungs have arterial or venous blood? What happens to the blood when it passes through the lungs? Arteries of the pulmonar

What is Cellular grade? Explain in brief. Organisms with this kind of cellular organization are referred to as the parazoan. They have distinct cells which function independent

Explain Doctrine of Signatures? Handed down from the ancients, and elaborated on by the herbalists, was the 'Doctrine of Signatures', which was based on features that resembled

meaning of the law of inertia

locomotary organ in mollusca

Explain Class Mammalia in animal kingdom? Class Mammalia: Mammals are distinguished by their hair and their mammary glands. Mammary glands, after which this group of vertebrate

Why is a weekly acidic drug best absorbed in an acidic environment?

Portal Hypertension: If you review the portal circulation you may recall that normal blood flow to and from the liver depends on proper functioning of  the portal vein, the he

Define the needs for Enteral Feeding? For enteral feeding following need to be considered: - In preterm calorie density to be 0.8 Kcal/ml, - LBW formulas used: protein -