6 Kingdoms of Life

There are many varieties of organisms (or living things) on the Earth. All of these organisms are classified into six kingdoms.

6 Kingdoms of Life
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6 kingdoms of life, from simplest to most complex, are as follows:

1. Archaebacteria
2. Eubacteria
3. Protista
4. Fungi
5. Plants
6. Animals

Scientist group organisms into kingdoms based on these THREE factors:

1. Cell Type
2. Cell Number
3. Feeding Type

What is a cell: The cell is the smallest unit of life. It is also known as the “building blocks of life”. The study of cells is called cell biology, cellular biology, or cytology.
Also Read – Plant Cell

1. Cell Type

➤ There are TWO types of cells:
Eukaryotic – which contain a nucleus.
Prokaryotic – which doesn’t have a nucleus.

6 Kingdoms of Life

2. Cell Number

➤ Organisms exist as either single cells or multiple cells
Unicellular organisms are made up of only ONE cell.
➤ On the other hand, Multicellular organisms consist of more than one cell.

6 Kingdoms of Life

3. Feeding Type

➤ Organisms either make their food or consume other organisms.
Autotroph or Producer – Plants are called Autotroph or Producer because they make their food using PHOTOSYNTHESIS.
Heterotroph or Consumer – Animals are called Heterotroph or Consumer because they eat other organisms to survive.

Main features of each kingdom

1. Archaebacteria Kingdom

➤ Archaebacteria are the simplest of known living cells.

➤ Single-celled

➤ Cell Type is Prokaryotic

➤ They are found in extremely harsh environments such as hot springs, without oxygen or highly acid environments.

6 Kingdoms of Life

2. Eubacteria Kingdom

➤ Single-celled organism

➤ Cell Type is Prokaryotic

➤ This kingdom makes up most of the bacteria in the world.

➤ They are found everywhere, such as in soil, water, and other living things.

➤ They are very common to humans as parasites like Streptococci, which causes strep throat.

Did you know?
More Eubacteria are living in your mouth than humans living on Earth….but most are harmless.

➤ However, these bacteria are beneficial in many ways, such as helping humans digest food, making yogurt or cheese, and breaking dead plants and animals down into the soil.

➤ They are found in three distinct shapes: rods, spheres, or spirals.

➤ Some bacteria are autotrophs, meaning they can photosynthesize like a plant. But some are heterotrophs like animals who consume food from producers.

3. Protista Kingdom

➤ Protista is also known as the odds and ends because the kingdom members are very odd from each other.

➤ They are mostly single-celled organisms.

Protista kingdom has THREE main categories:

  • Plant-like protists, e.g. algae
  • Fungus-like protists, e.g. slime mold
  • Animal-like protists, e.g. protozoa

Did you know?
Amoeba doesn’t die when it is cut into two halves. The half of the amoeba that contains a nucleus can survive, but the other half without a nucleus will die.

➤ Some are heterotrophs, and some are autotrophs.

➤ Some protists are beneficial, but some can cause diseases in humans, such as Amebic dysentery, African Sleeping Sickness, Malaria.

➤ Protists are found in lakes and ponds.

➤ Some of the examples of protists are Amoeba, Euglena, and Plasmodium.

4. Fungi Kingdom

➤ Fungi are eukaryotic organisms that are classified in their kingdom.

➤ They may be unicellular (yeast and molds) and multicellular (mushrooms) organisms.

➤ Fungi do not contain chlorophyll like plants. Hence, they are not capable of photosynthesis.

The study of fungi is known as mycology, and the Scientists who specialize in the study of fungi are called mycologists.

➤ They reproduce with the help of spores.

➤ They feed themselves by decomposing matter or eating off their hosts as parasites.

➤ Molds, mildews, yeasts, lichens, and mushrooms are some common types of fungus.

➤ Fungi play a vital role in many ways.

➤ Many antibiotics drugs are derived from fungi, such as Penicillin antibiotics derived from a common fungi Penicillium.

➤ It helps in the decomposition of organic matter, which is necessary for many life cycles, such as carbon, nitrogen and oxygen cycles.

➤ By breaking down organic materials, fungi release carbon, nitrogen and oxygen back into the ecosystem.

5. Plants (Plantae) Kingdom

➤ All plants are multicellular organisms made of Eukaryotic cells.

➤ Plants are autotrophic. They can make their food through photosynthesis.

➤ Plants can be divided into two main groups: vascular and nonvascular.

Vascular plants – soak up the water using their roots. These plants have true stems, leaves, and roots.

There are two types of vascular tissue called XYLEM & PHLOEM responsible for carrying water, minerals and photosynthesis products throughout the plant.

Nonvascular plants – soak up the water using their whole bodies. E.g. Moss is an example of a nonvascular plant.

➤ The Plant kingdom is the second largest kingdom with over 25,000 known species.

6. Animals (Animalia) Kingdom

➤ The animal kingdom is the largest kingdom with over 1 million known species.

➤ All animals are multicellular and made of Eukaryotic cells.

➤ Animals can be divided into two groups: Vertebrates and Invertebrates.

Vertebrates have backbones, e.g. humans.
Invertebrates don’t have backbones, e.g. Worms.

➤ All organisms in the Animal kingdom are heterotrophs that depend on plants and other organisms for nutrition.

6 Kingdoms of Life
6 Kingdoms of Life

In Summary - 6 Kingdoms of Life

6 Kingdoms of Life

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