Journal of Biosciences

, Volume 19, Issue 4, pp 403–413 | Cite as

Concepts and methods in ecomorphology

  • Walter J. Bock


An analysis of the concepts of ecomorphology is presented within a framework of areas of research in morphology, namely descriptive, functional, ecological and evolutionary morphology. A clear distinction must be made between functional and ecological morphology. The former is based on the concept of function and the latter on the concept of biological role. Although ecomorphology lies within the general area of evolutionary biology, explanations in ecomorphology are nomological-deductive and are distinctly different from explanations in evolutionary morphology which are historical-narrative.


Morphology functional morphology ecomorphology explanations evolution 


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Copyright information

© Indian Academy of Sciences 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Walter J. Bock
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

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