Non Living Things: Definition, Features and Examples

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non Living Things Definition

In biology, a non living things are any form that lacks life, such as an inanimate body or item. A non-living object lacks the characteristics that define a living thing as compared to a living creature. A non-living object, for example, lacks the essential component of life: a live cell that develops, metabolises, responds to external stimuli, reproduces, and adapts. A non-living object is made up of components or compounds that arise as a result of chemical processes rather than cells. Rocks, water, and air are examples of non-living objects.

non Living Things Etymology

The words non-living and living stem from the Middle English non-, which means “not,” “lack of,” or “failure to,” and lifende, which means “to live” or “to have a life. “Thing” is derived from the Old English word ing, which can signify “entity,” “being,” “body,” or “material.”

Living and non Living Things

A living creature is one that exhibits the characteristics of life; it is alive. A living creature is defined as one that moves, grows, and reproduces. We interpret the item as inanimate or non-living if it is not otherwise. A non-living object is shown in two ways. On the one hand, a non-living object is an entity that once had life but has since died. A non-living item, on the other hand, is something that has never had, never will have, and never will have life. The stricter definition of a non-living entity is the latter. The tighter definition of a non-living object is more accurate in a biological sense. In biological terms, a living item includes both alive and extinct species.

The fundamental resemblance between living and non-living objects is that they both refer to anything that exists. A separate entity, person, matter, or object is referred to as a thing. It’s possible to classify something depending on whether or not it has life. In contrast to a non-living item that lacks life, a living thing possesses or shows life.

Characteristics of non Living Things

i. Lack of Cell Organization

A non-living entity does not have cells, yet a living creature does. Although both non-living and living things are made up of molecules of elements and compounds, living things are made up of biomolecules that are arranged into cell structures. A living thing’s fundamental biological unit is the cell. It orchestrates and systemsatizes different biological activities. It is in charge of keeping the organism alive by conducting different metabolic activities such as cell development, cell respiration, reacting to stimuli, reproduction, nourishment, biomolecular syntheses, waste removal, and other homeostatic functions.

The protoplasm of the cell is enclosed by a plasma membrane. In the cytosol, many cytoplasmic entities are suspended. The nucleus is one of the most visible cytoplasmic components. Living organisms are categorised as prokaryotes or eukaryotes based on the existence of membrane-bound organelles such as the nucleus. Membrane-bound organelles are absent in prokaryotes, but they are present in eukaryotes.

ii. Growth by Accretion

A non-living organism does not develop in the same manner as a living organism does. Although certain non-living items appear to expand, this growth is caused by accretion rather than metabolic processes.

The cellular level of growth in living things is indicated by an increase in the number of cells or an increase in cell size. Cell division increases the number of cells (e.g. mitosis). The increase in cell size is frequently attributed to an increase in cytoplasmic mass. Some creatures have the ability to regenerate portions that have been lost. Plants, for example, can produce new shoots where they’ve been cut as long as the meristematic tissue isn’t damaged. Salamanders have the ability to regenerate new eyes and limbs. Humans have a limited ability to regenerate. They have the ability to repair skin and portions of the liver.

iii. non Motile

The majority of living things are motile, whereas non-living objects are not. Non-living objects might appear to move. The movement, however, is due to an external factor. Many living creatures have the ability to move about on their own. Animals have locomotory organs, which allow them to move around.

They move with them, particularly in reaction to stimuli. Animals, for example, flee their predators by fleeing away when they notice them. Animals may also travel in order to feed, find a better environment, or find a prospective partner. Plants, unlike most animals, are unable to move on their own volition. Plants are classified as living even though they are not as mobile as most animals. They exhibit many other traits of life.

iv. Lack of Reproduction

Non-living creatures can’t make duplicates of themselves in the natural world; living things can, through reproduction. A living object has the ability to create life. A living organism can reproduce in two ways: sexual reproduction and asexual reproduction. In sexual reproduction, the two parents’ sex cells combine to produce a zygote, which will ultimately grow into a creature of their own species. Sex cells are engaged in asexual reproduction, and the child comes from just one parent.

v. Lack of Metabolism

A living entity metabolises, but a non-living object does not. The numerous processes that allow the cell to stay alive are referred to as metabolism. Catabolism and anabolism are the 2 kinds of metabolism. Catabolism is a process in which a living organism performs degradative chemical processes that break down complex molecules into smaller components and receives energy from the process. Energy-driven chemical processes in anabolism create compounds from smaller components. As a result, a living organism needs energy to power these processes. Non-living objects, on the other hand, do not go through such metabolic processes and do not require energy to maintain their life.

vi. Not Responding to Stimuli

A non-living creature can not notice or respond to changes in its surroundings, but a living entity can. Non-living things lack the specific sensors that allow living things to perceive environmental changes. Sight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste are all senses that humans and other animals have. Plants and other creatures lack the complex sense organs seen in mammals, yet they can nevertheless notice changes in their surroundings and respond to stimuli. It’s possible that the answer will be favourable or negative. A positive reaction is one that is directed toward the stimulus source, whereas a negative response is one that is directed away from the stimulus source.

vi. Not Capable of Adaption

A non-living object does not adapt; a living object does so by adapting to changing circumstances. Living things are distinguished from non-living objects by their ability to adapt to changes in the environment. They have the ability to change in order to better adapt to their surroundings. In this context, it’s also worth noting that a non-living object doesn’t mutate, but a living thing does and so diversifies.

vii. Lack of Life Cycle

Because a non-living item has no life, it does not die. A non-living object decomposes rather than dies. The decomposition of a material by chemical or physical processes is referred to as abiotic decomposition. A living object, on the other hand, dies and decays. Death happens when a person’s life comes to an end. Organs, tissues, and cells stop working when a live entity dies. The breakdown process is referred to as decay in biology. Biodegradation is the process through which a deceased organism decomposes. Microbes, for example, degrade organic molecules into simpler forms.

non Living Things Examples

The term “non-living” refers to something that lacks the qualities of life. Non-living objects, according to that description, include rocks, water, sand, glass, and the sun. None of them exhibit any of the hallmarks of life. Others describe a non-living item as anything that once belonged to a live creature. Coal, wood, rubber, and paper, for example. Despite the fact that they were formerly a part of a live tree, they are now considered non-living.

Non-living objects are part of the abiotic components (abiotic elements) of the environment, such as soil and the atmosphere, in ecology. They have an impact on the growth, reproduction, and maintenance of living organisms. The biotic components or biotic elements are the living organisms themselves.

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