Could you expand on this? Because I am not sure what you mean by it. Science itself (assuming you mean the scientific method) is capable of understanding ecosystems, as it does. But do you mean scientists? As in the scientists of the time were not capable of understanding ecosystems?
There should be a distinction between science and those who wield it. Science is a tool (not an ideology). It can be put to many different purposes by whoever choses to, but scientists tend to build barriers to new ideas through universities and societies.