Just favor it is straightforward to identify and sort anything in the supermarkets when inserted in the appropriate section with suitable display the name, price, and also date that manufacture, similarly, it’s basic to study, identify and also differentiate any biological species when the group system bring order to the multitude of diversity inhabiting this planet. Among the varied plethora of diversity, if miscellaneous is common, the the “Biological Classification”. Many different taxonomists and also naturalists, like Aristotle, Theophrastus, Dioscorides, Ernst Mayr, Carl Linnaeus, Whittaker, and Carl Woese have actually proposed different classification systems because that the lull of researching the organic world. There are various various taxonomic ranks that resemble the subsections that a supermarket. This help in the quick identification that a species by aligning the characteristic functions with the classified rank. The key taxonomic ranks are as follows: Domain, Kingdom, Phylum/Division, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species, and also Subspecies. Among the various ranks, one distinct one is phylum. The definition of phylum in scientific research is “the assemblage the biological varieties on the communication of basic body plan”.

You are watching: What is the level of taxonomy that botanists sometimes use instead of phylum?


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Figure 1: Illustration explaining the power structure of various taxonomic ranking in the biological Classification System. Source: Akanksha Saxena of biological Online.

Phylum Chordata is an instance of a phylum. Would you choose to learn more from our Expert? sign up with us and also participate in our Forum discussion: What is phylum chordata?

Phylum Definition

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Figure 2: ernst Haeckel to be a German naturalist-cum-zoologist that coined the term phylum. Credit: UCMP Berkeley.

The an interpretation of phylum in Biology goes by “a taxonomic rank over class and below kingdom”. Over there are international Codes the Nomenclature that accept these taxonomic ranks as universal — definition they are applicable on all living creates whether the be tree phylum, animal phylum, mushroom phylum, protista phylum, or bacteria phylum. Plenty of botanists choose to use “Division” in ar of “Phylum” yet both are acceptable follow to the worldwide Code because that Plant Nomenclature.

Ernst Haeckel coined the term “phylum” in 1866. Literally, phylum method a race or a people that’s different from others based on some properties features. The is obtained from the Greek word “phylon” which has actually a relationship to another word “phyle” an interpretation tribe.The many of phylum is phyla (Note: there is no together word as phylums! many of phylum is phyla).

So, once asked what a phylum is, we can tell the it’s a classification level in the elaborative classification system that brings a most rationality when studying Biology.

There are 2 major ways in which us can describe the ide of phylum and also define phylum in biology:

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Figure 3 Table explaining the various approaches to recognize the phylum concept. Resource Akanksha Saxena of biologic Online.

Biology Definition:

Phylum is a taxonomic rank below Kingdom and over Class in organic classification, particularly of animals. In plants, the matching rank is Division. Example: Phylum Chordata includes class Mammalia (mammals), course Aves (birds), class Ascidiacea (sea squirts), etc. These pets have notochords in ~ some point in your life cycle. Etymology: Greek “phylon”, indigenous “phyle”, meaning “tribe”. Compare: division


Phylum Examples

All living organisms have been inserted in 5 major kingdoms follow to Robert Whittaker. They space Monera, Protista, Fungi, Plants, and Animals. Even if it is it be tree or animals, the meaning of “kingdom” stays the same, i.e. “a taxonomic rank that is over phylum and also below domain”.

Phylum is the 3rd highest category level according to Carl Woese’s 3-domain group system and the second highest group level according to Whittaker’s 5-kingdom category system.Each of these kingdoms includes many types of phylum.

Let’s take a look at them one by one to recognize them better. The definition of the category rank “phylum” in taxonomy must be clean by the end of this article.

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Figure 4: an illustration portraying the diversity of life organisms classified right into 5 major kingdoms with assorted phyla follow to the 5-Kingdom classification system of Robert Whittaker. Credit: Iberdrola.

Phyla in Kingdom Monera

Kingdom Monera requires both Eubacteria and also Archaea. Back in the 3-domain system of Carl Woese, castle are inserted in various domains however in Whittaker’s 5-kingdom system, both are put in the very same kingdom. There are around 29 phyla in Eubacteria and 5 phyla in Archaea.

Some famous phyla that the 29 phyla in Eubacteria are:

Chlamydiae Cyanobacteria Actinobacteria Firmicutes Spirochetes

Phyla in Kingdom Protista

This is a polyphyletic taxon and the phyla inserted under it has actually a really unstable position. On an approximate, over there are almost over 15 phyla in this kingdom, some of which are:

Ciliophora Euglenozoa (previously placed under phylum Thallophyta in Kingdom Plantae) Oomycota (previously inserted under Kingdom Fungi)

Phyla in Kingdom Fungi

There space 8 different phyla in this kingdom namely:

Ascomycota Basidiomycota Blastocladiomycota Chytridiomycota Glomeromycota Microsporidia Neocallimastigomycota Zygomycota
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Figure 5: august Wilhelm Eichler provided the very first classification device of plants based on a phylogenetic approach and coined the term “division”. (Photo in windy domain)

Phyla in Kingdom Plantae

Phylum in the tree kingdom has often been called “division” by botanists. Both space interchangeably used and accepted by the ICN. It was August W. Eichler in 1883 who separated the plant kingdom into 5 major plant phyla/divisions. He to be the same person who coined the hatchet “division”, i beg your pardon still continues to be in large usage in plants, fungi, and also algae studies.

5 phyla/divisions are:

Thallophyta (Charophyta, Chlorophyta, Glaucophyta, Rhodophyta) Bryophyta (Anthocerotophyta, Bryophyta, Marchantiophyta, Hepatophyta) Pteridophyta (Polypodiophyta, Monilophyta, Lycopodiophyta, Lycophyta) Gymnosperms (Cycadophyta, Ginkgophyta, Pinophyta, Coniferophyta, Gnetophyta) Angiosperms (Magnoliophyta)

See also: Plant biologic Tutorial

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Figure 6: light microscopy that Chlorella protothecoides – a member that Phylum Chlorophyta that’s broadly being bio-prospected because that the objective of biofuel. Credit: Velamendoza A.

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Figure 7 countless members of Phylum Chlorophyta room being researched by tree biologists because that the border of developing biodiesel and biofuel due to the fact that they room photosynthetic and have high biomass returns with much shorter life cycles. Credit transaction Scott Bell – Oilgae.com.

Phyla in Kingdom Animalia

This is substantial kingdom v over 30 pet phyla. Several of the phyla are:

Porifera Cnidaria Platyhelminthes Nematoda Annelida Mollusca Arthropoda Echinodermata (Note: 1-8 space the invertebrate phyla) Chordata (large phylum through all the vertebrates)

Phylum Chordata
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Figure 8: Typical personalities of chordates are significant in the figure.

This phylum has some properties features:

A notochord in at the very least one of their life step A dorsal nerve cord A post-anal tail Pharyngeal slits

This is a very diverse animal phylum making up the genus of humans– Homo sapiens sapiens (hence person phylum is Chordata!)

To learn an ext about chordates, read our post here- Chordata.

See more: How Many Yards Are In A Miles To Yards Conversion (Mi To Yd)

Join our discussion here: What is phylum chordata? to learn much more about this team of animals! We’d be happy to hear from you!

Phylum Porifera Phylum Porifera
Common Feature Basic cellular-level structure with no distinct tissues or organs, pore bearers, generally marine, existence of collar cells, have spicules and spongin for support
Number that germ layers 2 (therefore diploblastic)
Symmetry No body aircraft symmetry (asymmetric)
Cephalization None
Coelom None (Acoelomate)
Digestion Heterotrophic filter feeders, Intracellular (have incurrent and excurrent pores)
Respiration Diffusion via choanocytes
Circulation No circulatory system
Excretion No excretory mechanism (via diffusion only)
Nervous System None
Reproduction Asexual budding/regeneration, if sex-related (mostly hermaphrodite individuals and also external fertilization)

Phylum Cnidaria Phylum Cnidaria
Common Feature Stinging cells, together stinging tentacles space characteristic features, tissue-level structure, life cycle has both asexual polyp and also sexual medusa stages
Number of germ layers 2 (therefore diploblastic)
Symmetry Radial/Biradial
Cephalization Absent
Coelom None (Acoelomate)
Digestion Incomplete gastrovascular cavity
Respiration Via diffusion
Circulation No circulatory system
Excretion No excretory system (via diffusion only)
Nervous System Nerve net present
Reproduction Asexual budding, if sexual (mostly sexes room distinct and also external fertilization)

Phylum Platyhelminthes Phylum Platyhelminthes
Common Feature Flatworms have actually flattened bodies, ide of cephalization starts native this phylum that Animalia, developmental mode- protostome, parthenogenesis is common, Organ-level structure, plenty of are parasitic
Number the germ layers 3 (therefore triploblastic)
Number of germ layers Bilateral
Cephalization Present
Coelom None (Acoelomate)
Digestion Incomplete gastrovascular cavity with the muscular pharynx
Respiration Via diffusion
Circulation No circulatory system
Excretion Presence of flame cells that filter human body fluids
Nervous System Ganglia, twin nerve cord (also referred to as nerve ladder) and also sense organs
Reproduction Asexual fission/regeneration, if sex-related (mostly hermaphrodite individuals and also external fertilization

Phylum Mollusca Phylum Mollusca
Common Feature Soft-bodied mantles, have actually 3 significant body components (head, foot, visceral mass), have radula-rasping tongue, developmental mode- protostome, organ-level structure, hydrostatic skeleton (mostly have actually a shell), parthenogenesis is common, cephalopods space the most intelligent invertebrates!
Number of germ layers 3 (therefore triploblastic)
Number of germ layers Bilateral
Cephalization Present
Coelom Coelomate
Digestion Complete (mouth, esophagus, stomach, intestine, anus)
Respiration Via gills or lungs
Circulation Open device with heart, blood vessels and also sinuses
Excretion Nephridia, basic kidney
Nervous System Ganglia, many nerve cords and sense organs
Reproduction Sexual (mostly distinctive sexes individuals and external fertilization observed)

Phylum Arthropoda Phylum Arthropoda
Common Feature First time exoskeleton observed in invertebrates, molting occurs, body divided in head-thorax-abdomen, metamorphosis is characteristics of this phylum, jointed foot observed, developmental mode- protostome, organ-level structure, have paired muscles with tendons, good number of species, part undergo parthenogenesis
Number that germ layers 3 (therefore triploblastic)
Number of germ layers Bilateral
Cephalization Present
Coelom Coelomate
Digestion Complete (mouth, esophagus, stomach, intestine, anus)
Respiration Gills in aquatic species, book lungs/trachea and spiracles in land species
Circulation Dorsal heart and open circulatory system
Excretion Green glands, basic kidneys, malpighian tubules
Nervous System Brain, ventral nerve cord, statocyst (balancing organ), sensory hair
Reproduction Sexual (mostly distinctive sexes individuals and also internal/external fertilization observed)

So, now that we have noted a variety of phyla from different kingdoms the the organic world, we can define what walk phylum way and exactly how this entire group system helps in developing an easy understanding of assorted species.


I think all of you would have actually watched “Sponge Bob Square Pants”, the well known TV cartoon show. If you have actually watched it, climate you would certainly have likewise encountered the protagonist Sponge Bob’s enemy “the plankton” usually zooplankton. ~ above the basis of your habitat, deserve to you now tell i beg your pardon Phylum do these 2 characters belong to????Yes, SpongeBob is a member that Phylum Porifera and also plankton is a member the Phylum Protozoa. So, next time girlfriend see any kind of cartoon or web collection that’s animated, you can easily identify native which organic organism the different characters are inspired from- if you room thorough through the taxonomy and its magnanimous outlooks….