Ecology is a subfield of biology that, in a broad sense, studies how organisms interact with other organisms and with their environment.
Etymologically, “ecology” was created from the Greek word “oikos”, referring specifically to it’s meaning as house (“logy” means “study of”). This is fitting, as a house is a dynamic interaction of life and non-life. A house, fundamentally, is inanimate material manipulated by animate material to facilitate further interactions of animate and inanimate matter.
“Oikos” can be extended to mean “habitat”, which is similarly defined in a way fundamentally the same as house. Whether “house” is thought to mean only a human domicile structure doesn’t matter. A worm’s house is leaf litter and soil, a bird’s house is a nest, a humans house is a cave or a condo, or all of the above’s and beyond’s house is the planet Earth. Regardless, a house is a habitat is an interaction of living and non-living.