Characteristics of Five Kingdom Classification

Characteristics of Five Kingdom Classification

R.H. Whittaker (1969) proposed five kingdom classification. He divided organisms into kingdom Monera, Protista, Fungi, Plantae and Animalia, on the basis of following criteria:

  1. Cell structure (either prokaryotic or eukaryotic)
  2. Thallus organisation (body differentiated or not)
  3. Mode of nutrition (autotrophic or heterotrophic)
  4. Reproduction
  5. Phylogenetic (or evolutionary) relationship


Characters / Kingdom Monera Protista Fungi Plantae Animalia
Cell type Prokaryotic Eukaryotic Eukaryotic Euakryotic Eukaryotic
Cell wall Non-cellulosic (Polysaccharides + amino acids) Present in some Present (without cellulose) Present (cellulose) Absent
Nuclear membrane Absent Present Present Present Present
Body organisation Cellular Cellular Multicellular / loose tissue Tissue / organ Tissue / organ / organ system
Mode of nutrition Autotrophic (chemosynthetic and photosynthetic) and Heterotrophic (saprophytic / parasite) Autotrophic (Photosynthetic) and Heterotrophic Heterotrophic (saprophytic / parasite) Autotrophic (Photosynthetic) Heterotrophic (Holozoic etc.)


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