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Despawn is a term used for the game mechanic involved when a mob, a dropped item or another unplaced object disappears after a particular amount of time, during a certain time of day, or in a particular situation. Despawning is different from when a mob dies, as the mob will not drop any items or materials when it disappears.
Mobs subject to despawning
In most cases, a mob will despawn immediately if there are no players within a distance of 128 blocks. If it's not within 32 blocks of a player for more than 30 seconds, there's a 1⁄800 chance each game tick it will despawn (2.47% chance per second). There are a few additional situations where a mob might despawn:
- Creepers mainly despawn during the day but may despawn at any time if they have not been engaged in combat for a period of time.
- Endermites despawn after two minutes.
- Ocelots may despawn if they have not been tamed.
- Tiny slimes may despawn after a period of time.
- Witches despawn if a player is far enough away from them.
- Zombie pigmen despawn if they have not been engaged in combat for a long period of time.
Objects subject to despawning
- Any dropped items will despawn after five minutes.
- Arrows that have been shot from a bow and have stuck into a surface will despawn after one minute.
- Tridents that have been thrown and stuck into a surface will despawn after one minute.
- Leaves will despawn if not attached to a wood log or other leaves, but only if they were originally attached to a Tree.
- Saddles will despawn if the pig that it is attached to despawns.