Kingdom (Kingdoms)

Animal Taxonomy Pyramid Diagram

Biology definition: A kingdom is a taxonomic rank composed of smaller groups called phyla (or divisions, in plants). It serves as one of the primary ranks for organizing and grouping living organisms based on their shared characteristics and evolutionary history. The currently recognized kingdoms include Animalia (animals), Plantae (plants), Fungi (fungi), Protista (protists), and Monera (bacteria). This hierarchical approach helps biologists study the relationships and diversity among all living things on Earth.

All living organisms can be placed in one of six different animal kingdom classifications. The characteristics of each animal kingdom are:

  1. Animal – A kingdom of complex multi-celled organisms that do not produce their own food. This kingdom contains all living and extinct animals. Examples include elephants, whales, and humans.
  2. Plants – Complex and multi-cellular autotrophic organisms, meaning they produce their own food through photosynthesis. Examples include trees, flowers, and grass.
  3. Fungi – Multi-celled organisms that do not produce their own food, unlike plants. Examples include molds, mushrooms, and yeast.
  4. Protista – Single-celled organisms with more complexity than either eubacteria or archaebacteria. Examples include algae and amoebas
  5. Eubacteria – Single-celled organisms found in everything from yogurt to your intestines. This kingdom contains all bacteria in the world not considered archaebacteria.
  6. Archaebacteria – The oldest known living organisms. Single-celled and found in hostile and extremely hot areas like thermal vents or hot springs


  • Austin, S. (2023, January 30). Classification of Animals: The Complete Guide. A-Z-Animals. Retrieved September 25, 2023, from Link
  • Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. (2023). Animal Taxonomy [Photograph]. Britannica. Link
  • Kingdom. (2023). In BiologyOnline. Link

Additional Sources of Information

  • NatureFiji-MareqetiViti is Fiji’s only domestic NGO working solely for the conservation and sustainable management of Fiji’s unique natural heritage – Link