Difference between living and non-living things

Difference between living and non-living things:: in our daily life, we face different common types of things around us. Our earth contains various kinds of things, which can be living things or non-living things. 

There are plenty of things that complete the ecosystem, such as cat, bird, human, soil, air, water, food, trees, dog, minerals, flowers, etc. In addition, there are two types of things, living and non-living things.

This article will help you get to know about the difference between living and non-living things. This differs from the characteristics of both words. It helps you to get to know more details about the difference between living and non-living things

In this nature, all living things like plants, animals, insects, birds, microorganisms, etc., have one essential feature: life. So that’s why we mean living things by all those creatures of nature that have a lifespan. 

But things like the bottle, pen, chair, door, computer, mobiles, etc., mean non-living things. This is because these things are not alive.

All living things contain small units called cells. They have the functions to possess life. But the non-living things don’t include such types of cells.

 Let’s look at the main characteristics of living and non-living things, their definition, and the difference between the two.

Difference between living and non-living things

Difference between living and non-living things
Difference between living and non-living things

∆Living things:


We mean by living things that are capable of producing a new life through the process of Reproduction.

They have a certain life period. The lifespan varies for the different types of animals. But the main thing is they are not immortal. All the animals have to die one day. Some die in a short period, and some take longer. 

Living things have the growth of their living organism that is alive. Living things contain a small unit of the structure that we all know as tissue cells. There are various types of tissues in living things. 

Their functions are also different. They work differently in different bodies, and the organisms also have unusual growths. The combination of all makes the ecosystem.

Example:  human beings, plants, insects, birds, animals, fungi, viruses, bacteria, algae, protozoa, etc.


● Living things can move. They can run as they have specialized organs that help to move. If we take an example as Earthworm, we can see that the Earthworms move through the soil surface as they walk by grasping the soil. They move through longitudinal and circular muscles.

● Living things have the respiration process. It is a chemical reaction occurring inside the cells to release energy from the food. It helps to exchange gases. This process helps to excrete waste materials.

● These things are compassionate as they react and respond quickly. They are capable of smelling.

● They have the growth of their living organisms. Their growth varies through different stages of development.

● They can reproduce their offspring’s of the same kind.

● They need food, water, air to live their livelihood. They need the energy to do any work.

● The digested food that has no use for the body is eliminated from the body through excretion.

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∆Non-living things:


We mean non-living things as the things which are not alive. They do not have any life. They do not have any tissue cells that help grow or contribute to showing the locomotion/movement. They don’t have such a process as metabolism that has anabolic and catabolic reactions. So they can’t reproduce the next generation.

The main characteristic of non-living things is that they have no life. Therefore, they do not have any quality such as Reproduction, growth and development, respiration, metabolism, adaptation, responsiveness, movement, etc.

Example:– wood, plastic, iron, metals, leather, cotton, etc.


There are some main characteristics of non-living things that we mention below:

● Non-living things don’t have any life. They do not have tissue cells, or if we say in detail, there is no such protoplasm that helps form life to exist.

● As they have no protoplasm, they don’t have any metabolism and don’t have any BMR( Basal metabolic rate)

● They do not have any fixed size. They take shape where they are going to put in. For example, a liquid like water makes how we want to contain it.

● They have no growth in their organisms. That’s why there is no question to arise for growth.

● Non-living things don’t have the stage of a die. They are immortal.

● They don’t have any fundamental processes such as Reproduction, nutrition, excretion, etc., as these are present in living things.

Difference between living and non-living things

Living cells make living things. There are no cells present in non-living things.
Living things need food, air, and water to live. Non-living things don’t require food, air, and water.
They have grown in living organisms. They have no growth in their living organisms.
Here, reproduction is present. Here, it is absent.
They can respire. Here, the respiration process is absent.
They can move from one place to another. They cannot move from one place to another on their own.
Living things have sensitivity, and they react and respond to the changes around them. They don’t have any sensitivity and don’t respond to any movement happening around them.
Living things excrete the waste materials which have no use for them. They can not excrete waste materials.
They have a particular life cycle. They don’t have any particular life cycle.
Example:- humans, plants, animals, etc. Example:- pencil, rock, Steel, any gadgets, etc.
They need the energy to live. Non-living things don’t require any energy.
They have metabolism and catabolism. No such types of things happen.
They have the evaluation process. They don’t have any evaluation process.


In our daily lives, we all face many things that we may have experienced or may not be. In addition, the life span varies in different animals, as the tissue cells increase differently in different bodies. Thus, you get to know the difference between living and non-living things

FAQS on the Difference between living and non-living things

Question – What is a living thing?

Answer – Living things have various characteristics, which manifest themselves to varying degrees: they breathe, move, respond to stimuli, reproduce and grow, and are dependent on the environment.

Question – What is an inanimate example?

Answer – Inanimate objects are inanimate objects or forces that can influence, shape, change habitats, and affect their lives. Any cases of non-living things include rocks, stream and weather.

Question – Is Apple alive?

Answer – Apples or dead leaves are an example of inanimate objects. Non-living objects can have some characteristics of living things, but not all five elements. Cars can move and use energy to make them look alive, but vehicles cannot reproduce.

Question – Are bacteria alive?

Answer – Bacteria (singular: bacteria) are the primary living organisms. Most are microscopic and single-celled, with a relatively simple cellular structure, without nuclei or mitochondria and chloroplasts of all living things.

Question – What are animate and inanimate things called?

Answer – One is called a creature. Creatures eat, breathe, grow, move, reproduce, and have senses. The other type is called non-living. Non-living things cannot eat, live, grow, transfer, or breed.

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