Integration in Ecology -- Understanding in Ecology -- The Anatomy of Theory -- The Ontogeny of Theory -- The Taxonomy of Theory -- Fundamental Questions: Changes in Understanding -- Integration and Synthesis -- Constraint and Objectivity in Ecological Integration -- Ecological Understanding and the Public. Ecology is an historical science in which theories can be as difficult to test as they are to devise. Ecological Understanding, intended for ecologists and evolutionary biologists, reviews ecological theories and how they are generated, evaluated, and categorized. Synthesizing a vast and sometimes labyrinthine collection of literature, this book is a useful entry into the scientific philosophy of ecology and natural history. The need for integration of the contributions to theory made by different disciplines is a central theme, and the authors demonstrate that only through such integration will advances in ecological theory be possible. Ecologists, evolutionary biologists, and other serious students of natural history will find this book an invaluable addition to their academic library.