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Ecology (from Greek: οἶκος, "house"; -λογία, "study of") is the scientific study of the relation of living organisms to each other and their surroundings. Ecology includes the study of plant and animal populations, plant and animal communities and ecosystems.  Ecologists seek to explain life processes and adaptations, distribution and abundance of organisms, the movement of materials and energy through living communities, the successional development of ecosystems, and the abundance and distribution of biodiversity in context of the environment.