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Carnivora
Carnivora
(/kɑːrˈnɪvərə/;[3][4] from Latin
Latin
carō (stem carn-) "flesh" and vorāre "to devour") is a diverse scrotiferan order that includes over 280 species of placental mammals. Its members are formally referred to as carnivorans, whereas the word "carnivore" (often popularly applied to members of this group) can refer to any meat-eating organism. Carnivorans are the most diverse in size of any mammalian order, ranging from the least weasel (Mustela nivalis), at as little as 25 g (0.88 oz) and 11 cm (4.3 in), to the polar bear (Ursus maritimus), which can weigh up to 1,000 kg (2,200 lb), to the southern elephant seal (Mirounga leonina), whose adult males weigh up to 5,000 kg (11,000 lb) and measure up to 6.9 m (23 ft) in length. Carnivorans have teeth and claws adapted for catching and eating other animals. Many hunt in packs and are social animals, giving them an advantage over larger prey. Some carnivorans, such as cats and pinnipeds, depend entirely on meat for their nutrition. Others, such as raccoons and bears, are more omnivorous, depending on the habitat. The giant panda is largely a herbivore, but feeds on fish, eggs and insects. The polar bear subsists mainly on seals. Carnivorans are split into two suborders: feliforms ("cat-like") and caniforms ("dog-like").

Contents

1 Taxonomy

1.1 Evolution

2 Distinguishing features

2.1 Skull structure 2.2 Dentition 2.3 Physiology 2.4 Diet specializations 2.5 Reproductive system

3 Phylogeny 4 Classification

4.1 Phylogenetic tree

5 See also 6 References 7 External links

Taxonomy[edit]

Carnivore
Carnivore
(wolf) mandible diagram showing the names and positions of the teeth.

Carnivorans all share the same arrangement of teeth in which the last upper premolar (named P4) and the first lower molar (named m1) have blade-like enamel crowns that work together as carnassial teeth to shear meat. Carnivorans have had this arrangement for over 60 million years with many adaptions, and these dental adaptions help identify carnivoran species and groupings of species.[5] Evolution[edit] Carnivorans evolved in North America out of members of the family Miacidae
Miacidae
(miacids) about 42 million years ago.[1] They soon split into cat-like and dog-like forms ( Feliformia
Feliformia
and Caniformia). Their molecular phylogeny[6] shows the extant Carnivora
Carnivora
are a monophyletic group, the crown group of the Carnivoramorpha. Distinguishing features[edit]

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A brown bear, showing the sharp teeth and claws characteristic of carnivorans

Most carnivorans are terrestrial; they usually have strong, sharp claws, typically with five, but never fewer than four, toes on each foot, and well-developed, prominent canine teeth, cheek teeth (premolars, and molars) that generally have cutting edges.[citation needed] The last premolar of the upper jaw and first molar of the lower are termed the carnassials or sectorial teeth. These blade-like teeth occlude (close) with a scissor-like action for shearing and shredding meat. Carnassials
Carnassials
are most highly developed in the Felidae and the least developed in the Ursidae. Carnivorans have six incisors and two conical canines in each jaw. The only two exceptions to this are the sea otter (Enhydra lutris), which has four incisors in the lower jaw, and the sloth bear (Melursus ursinus), which has four incisors in the upper jaw. The number of molars and premolars is variable between carnivoran species, but all teeth are deeply rooted and are diphyodont.[7] Incisors
Incisors
are retained by carnivorans and the third incisor is commonly large and sharp (canine-like). Carnivorans have either four or five digits on each foot, with the first digit on the forepaws, also known as the dew claw, being vestigial in most species and absent in some.[citation needed] The superfamily Canoidea
Canoidea
(or suborder Caniformia) – Canidae (wolves, dogs and foxes), Mephitidae
Mephitidae
(skunks and stink badgers), Mustelidae
Mustelidae
(weasels, badgers, and otters), Procyonidae
Procyonidae
(raccoons), Ursidae
Ursidae
(bears), Ailuridae
Ailuridae
(red panda), Otariidae
Otariidae
(eared seals), Odobenidae
Odobenidae
(walrus), and Phocidae
Phocidae
(earless seals) (the last three families formerly classified in the superfamily Pinnipedia) and the extinct family Amphicyonidae
Amphicyonidae
(bear-dogs) – are characterized by having nonchambered or partially chambered auditory bullae, nonretractable claws, and a well-developed baculum. Most species are rather plain in coloration, lacking the flashy spotted or rosetted coats like many species of felids and viverrids have. This is because Canoidea
Canoidea
tend to range in the temperate and subarctic biomes, although Mustelidae
Mustelidae
and Procyonidae
Procyonidae
have a few tropical species. Most are terrestrial, although a few species, like procyonids, are arboreal. All families except the Canidae
Canidae
and a few species of Mustelidae
Mustelidae
are plantigrade. Diet is varied and most tend to be omnivorous to some degree, and thus the carnassial teeth are less specialized. Canoidea have more premolars and molars in an elongated skull. The superfamily Feloidea
Feloidea
(or suborder Feliformia)– Felidae
Felidae
(cats), Prionodontidae
Prionodontidae
(Asiatic linsangs), Herpestidae
Herpestidae
(mongooses), Hyaenidae (hyenas), Viverridae
Viverridae
(civets), and Eupleridae
Eupleridae
(Malagasy carnivorans), as well as the extinct family Nimravidae
Nimravidae
(paleofelids) – often have spotted, rosetted or striped coats, and tend to be more brilliantly colored than their Canoidean counterparts. This is because these species tend to range in tropical habitats, although a few species do inhabit temperate and subarctic habitats. Many are arboreal or semiarboreal, and the majority are digitigrade. Diet tends to be more strictly carnivorous, especially in the family Felidae. They have fewer teeth and shorter skulls, with much more specialized carnassials meant for shearing meat. Feliformia
Feliformia
claws are often retractile, or rarely, semiretractile. The terminal phalanx, with the claw attached, folds back in the forefoot into a sheath by the outer side of the middle phalanx of the digit, and is retained in this position when at rest by a strong elastic ligament. In the hindfoot, the terminal joint or phalanx is retracted on to the top, and not the side of the middle phalanx. Deep flexor muscles straighten the terminal phalanges, so the claws protrude from their sheaths, and the soft "velvety" paw becomes suddenly converted into a formidable weapon. The habitual retraction of the claws preserves their points from wear.[citation needed] The superfamily Pinnipedia
Pinnipedia
(walruses, seals, and sea lions), now considered to be part of Caniformia, are medium to large (to 6.5 m) aquatic mammals. Being homeothermic (warm-blooded) marine mammals, pinnipeds need a low surface area to body mass ratio. Otherwise, they would suffer from excessive heat loss due to water's high capacity for heat conduction. The body is usually insulated with a thick layer of fat called blubber and typically covered with hair. The digits are not separate, but connected by a thick web that forms flippers for swimming; thus, the forelimbs and hindlimbs are transformed into paddles. This enables them to dive at extreme depths (600 m for the Weddell seal). They can remain underwater for long periods of time, sometimes an hour or more, but most dives are usually short. The facial region of skull is relatively small, with pinnae very small or lacking, and the vibrissae are well developed. The molariform teeth are mostly homodont and the canines are well developed. The tail is very short or absent, the ears are small or absent as well, and the external genitalia are hidden in slits or depressions in the body.[7] Skull structure[edit]

Skull of Hyaena eximia

Members of Carnivora
Carnivora
have a characteristic skull shape with relatively large brains encased in a heavy skull. The skull has a highly developed zygomatic arch just behind the maxilla (common to all mammals and their cynodont forebears), and they have ossified external auditory bullae. Feloidea
Feloidea
have a two-chambered auditory bulla. In addition to allowing extra room for the passage of muscles to work the lower jaw, the zygomatic arch also allows for differentiation of separate muscle groups to be involved in biting and chewing. Masseters attach from the dentary (specifically, the masseteric fossa) to the zygomatic arch and onto the maxilla in front of the arch, providing crushing force. The temporalis attaches from the dentary (specifically, the coronoid process) to the side of the braincase, providing torque about the axis of jaw articulation.

Diagram of a wolf skull with key features labelled

In comparing the skulls of carnivores and herbivores, it can be seen that the shearing force of the temporalis is somewhat more important to carnivores, which have more room on the braincase (this is not unrelated to carnivoran intelligence) and commonly develop a sagittal crest (running from posterior to anterior on the skull), providing yet additional room for temporalis attachment. Carnivoran jaws can only move on a vertical axis, in an up-and-down motion, and cannot move from side-to-side. The jaw joint in carnivores tends to lie within the plane of tooth occlusion, an arrangement that further emphasizes shearing (as in a pair of scissors). In herbivores, the crushing force of the masseters is relatively more important than is shearing. The jaw joint is generally well above the plane of tooth occlusion, allowing extra room for masseteric attachment on the dentary and causing the rotation of the lower jaw to be translated into straight-ahead crushing force between the teeth of the upper and lower jaws. Dentition[edit] Dentition
Dentition
relates to the arrangement of teeth in the mouth, with the dental notation for the upper-jaw teeth using the upper-case letters I to denote incisors, C for canines, P for premolars, and M for molars, and the lower-case letters i, c, p and m to denote the mandible teeth. Teeth are numbered using one side of the mouth and from the front of the mouth to the back. In carnivores, the upper premolar P4 and the lower molar m1 form the carnassials that are used together in a scissor-like action to shear the muscle and tendon of prey.[8] Physiology[edit] See also: Category: Carnivora
Carnivora
anatomy. Carnivora
Carnivora
have a simple stomach adapted to digest primarily meat, as compared to the elaborate digestive systems of herbivorous animals, which are necessary to break down tough, complex plant fibers. The caecum is either absent or short and simple, and the colon is not sacculated or much wider than the small intestine. Most species of Carnivora
Carnivora
are, to some degree, omnivorous, except the Felidae
Felidae
and Pinnipedia, which are obligate carnivores. Most have highly developed senses, especially vision and hearing, and often a highly acute sense of smell in many species, such as in the Canoidea. They are excellent runners: some are long-distance runners, but more commonly are sprinters. Even bears and raccoons, although seemingly slow and clumsy, are capable of remarkable bursts of speed. Diet specializations[edit] Carnivorans include carnivores, omnivores, and even a few primarily herbivorous species, such as the giant panda and the binturong. Important teeth for carnivorans are the large, slightly recurved canines, used to dispatch prey, and the carnassial complex, used to rend meat from bone and slice it into digestible pieces. Dogs
Dogs
have molar teeth behind the carnassials for crushing bones, but cats have only a greatly reduced, functionless molar behind the carnassial in the upper jaw. Cats will strip bones clean but will not crush them to get the marrow inside. Omnivores, such as bears and raccoons, have developed blunt, molar-like carnassials. Carnassials
Carnassials
are a key adaptation for terrestrial vertebrate predation; all other placental orders are primarily herbivores, insectivores, or aquatic. Reproductive system[edit] See also: Mammalian reproduction, Canidae
Canidae
§ Reproduction, and Pinniped
Pinniped
§ Birth and parenting

A cat with a litter of four kittens

Most male carnivorans have a baculum, although it is relatively short in felids, and absent in hyenas.[9] Carnivorans tend to produce a single litter annually,[7] but some produce multiple litters a year, and larger carnivorans, like bears, have gaps of 2–3 yr between litters. The average gestation period lies between 50 and 115 days, although the ursids and mustelids have delayed implantation, thus extending the gestation period six to 9 months beyond the normal period. Litter sizes are usually small, ranging from one to 13 young, which are born with underdeveloped eyes and ears. In most species, the mother has exclusive or at least primary care of the offspring. Many species of carnivorans are solitary, but a few are gregarious.[citation needed] Phylogeny[edit]

Artist's impression of one of the first carnivorans, a miacid

Carnivorans evolved from members of the family Miacidae
Miacidae
(miacids, now recognized as paraphyletic[10]). The transition from Miacidae
Miacidae
to Carnivora
Carnivora
was a general trend in the middle and late Eocene, with taxa from both North America and Eurasia
Eurasia
involved. The divergence of carnivorans from other miacids, as well as the divergence of the two clades within Carnivora, Caniformia
Caniformia
and Feliformia, is now inferred to have happened in the middle Eocene, about 42 million years ago (mya).[1] Traditionally, the extinct family Viverravidae (viverravids) had been thought to be the earliest carnivorans, with fossil records first appearing in the Paleocene
Paleocene
of North America about 60 mya, but recently described evidence from cranial morphology now places them outside the order Carnivora.[11] The Miacidae
Miacidae
are not a monophyletic group, but a paraphyletic array of stem taxa. Today, Carnivora
Carnivora
is restricted to the crown group, Carnivora
Carnivora
and miacoids are grouped in the clade Carnivoramorpha, and the miacoids are regarded as basal carnivoramorphs. Based on dental features and braincase sizes, it is now known that Carnivora
Carnivora
must have evolved from a form even more primitive than Creodonta, and thus these two orders may not even be sister groups.[12] The Carnivora, Creodonta, Pholidota, and a few other extinct orders are informally grouped together in the clade Ferae. Older classification schemes divided the order into two suborders: Fissipedia
Fissipedia
(which included the families of primarily land Carnivora) and Pinnipedia
Pinnipedia
(which included the true seals, eared seals, and walrus). However, it is now recognized that the Fissipedia
Fissipedia
is a paraphyletic group and that the pinnipeds were not the sister group to the fissipeds but rather had arisen from among them. Carnivora
Carnivora
are generally divided into the suborders Feliformia (cat-like) and Caniformia
Caniformia
(dog-like), the latter of which includes the pinnipeds. The pinnipeds are part of a clade, known as the Arctoidea, which also includes the Ursidae
Ursidae
(bears) and the superfamily Musteloidea. The Musteloidea
Musteloidea
in turn consists of the Mustelidae (mustelids: weasels), Procyonidae
Procyonidae
(procyonids: raccoons), Mephitidae (skunks) and Ailurus
Ailurus
(red panda). The oldest caniforms are the Miacis species Miacis
Miacis
cognitus, the Amphicyonidae
Amphicyonidae
(bear-dogs) such as Daphoenus, and Hesperocyon
Hesperocyon
(of the family Canidae, subfamily Hesperocyoninae). Hesperocyonine canids first appeared in North America, and the earliest species is currently dated at 39.74 mya, but they were not represented in Europe until well into the Miocene, and not into Asia and Africa until the Pliocene. Miacis
Miacis
and Amphicyonidae were the first of the caniforms to split from the others and are sometimes considered to be sister groups to Ursidae, but the exact closeness of Amphicyonidae
Amphicyonidae
and Ursidae, as well as Arctoidae to Ursidae, is still uncertain. The Canidae
Canidae
(wolves, coyotes, jackals, foxes and dogs) are generally considered to be the sister group to Arctoidea.[12][13][14] The Ursidae
Ursidae
first occur in North America in the Late Eocene
Eocene
(ca. 38 mya) as the very small and graceful Parictis that had a skull only 7 cm long. Like the canids, this family does not appear in Eurasia
Eurasia
and Africa until the Miocene. The other caniform families Amphicyonidae, Mustelidae
Mustelidae
and Procyonidae
Procyonidae
occur in both the Old World and the New World by the Late Eocene
Eocene
and Early Oligocene.[12]

An African palm civet, possibly an example of a primitive feliform

The ancestor of all Feliformia
Feliformia
evolved from the Caniformia-Feliformia split. Nandinia, the African palm civet, seems to be the most primitive of all the feliforms and the very first to split from the others.[6] The Asiatic linsangs of the genus Prionodon
Prionodon
(traditionally placed in the Viverridae) form a family of their own, as some recent[15] studies indicate that Prionodon
Prionodon
is actually the closest living relative to the cats. The Nimravidae
Nimravidae
are sometimes seen as the most basal of all feliforms and the first to split from the others, but there is a possibility that Nimravidae
Nimravidae
might not even belong within the order,[14] and therefore its position as a clade within Carnivora
Carnivora
is currently unstable. Other studies indicate that the barbourofelids form a separate family, which is closely related to the true felids instead of being related to the nimravids. Recognizable nimravid fossils date from the late Eocene
Eocene
(37 mya), from the Chadronian White River Carnivora
Carnivora
Formation at Flagstaff Rim, Wyoming. Nimravid diversity appears to have peaked about 28 mya. The hypercarnivorous (strictly meat-eating) nimravid feliforms were extinct in North America after 26 mya and felids did not arrive in North America until the early middle Miocene
Miocene
(16 mya). It has been suggested that canids evolved hypercarnivorous morphologies because feliforms were absent during this period (the "cat-gap", 26-18.5 mya), however recent data do not support this hypothesis. Hypercarnivore
Hypercarnivore
feliforms (felids and nimravids) occupied an area that canids did not and where felids, nimravids, and hypercarnivorous creodonts are found. Hypercarnivorous canids were present before the disappearance of the nimravids, and all became extinct before the appearance of felids. Following the extinction of nimravids, only three taxa originated, two of which were relatively small in body size. Disparity increased during the "cat-gap" even with the extinction of the hypercarnivorous extremes. This was due to the extinction of morphological intermediates, and because carnivorans began to occupy hypocarnivorous (nonmeat-specialist) morphospace for the first time in North America. Procyonids did not arrive in North America until the early Miocene, and "modern" ursids (e.g., Ursinae), did not arrive until the late Miocene. Extinct lineages of Ursidae were present in North America from the late Eocene
Eocene
through the Miocene and amphicyonids (bear-dogs) were present during this period as well, but occupied a morphospace generally shared with canids and not in close proximity to ursids. A large question remains as to why there was a progressive decline in hypercarnivorous carnivoramorphans during the late Oligocene/early Miocene. During this period all hypercarnivorous forms disappeared from the fossil record, including hypercarnivorous feliforms, canids, and mustelids. One possible explanation is climate change. Earth was gradually cooling after the late Paleocene, and over a period spanning the Eocene/Oligocene boundary, a dramatic climatic cooling event occurred.[16] A recent study has finally resolved the exact position of Ailurus: the red panda is neither a procyonid nor an ursid, but forms a monotypic family, with the other musteloids as its closest living relatives. The same study also showed that the mustelids are not a primitive family, as was once thought. Their small body size is a secondary trait—the primitive body form of the arctoids was large, not small.[13] Recent molecular studies also suggest that the endemic Carnivora
Carnivora
of Madagascar, including three genera usually classed with the civets and four genera of mongooses classed with the Herpestidae, are all descended from a single ancestor. They form a single sister taxon to the Herpestidae. The hyenas are also closely related to this clade. Classification[edit]

Least weasel, the smallest carnivoran

Southern elephant seal, the largest carnivoran

When the order Carnivora
Carnivora
was first named, there were only five families:

Family Canidae: Dogs, wolves and foxes Family Felidae: Cats Family Mustelidae: Weasels, badgers, raccoons, otters, skunks, and relatives (combining today's families Mustelidae
Mustelidae
and Mephitidae) Family Ursidae: Bears, and pandas (combining today's families Ailuridae, Procyonidae, and Ursidae) Family Viverridae: Mongooses, civets, hyenas, and relatives (combining today's families Eupleridae, Herpestidae, Hyaenidae, Nandiniidae, Prionodontidae, and Viverridae)

The most common modern classification scheme divides the Carnivora into sixteen living and a number of extinct families, as follows:[17]

ORDER CARNIVORA

Suborder Feliformia
Feliformia
("cat-like")

Superfamily †Stenoplesictoidea

Family †Stenoplesictidae Family †Percrocutidae

Family †Nimravidae: false sabre-tooth cats (5–36 mya) Family Nandiniidae: African palm civet; one species Superfamily Feloidea

Family Prionodontidae: Asiatic linsangs; two species in one genus Family † Barbourofelidae
Barbourofelidae
(6–18 mya) Family Felidae: cats; 41 species in 15 genera

Superfamily Viverroidea

Family Viverridae: civets and allies; 34 species in 15 genera[18] Superfamily Herpestoidea

Family Hyaenidae: hyenas and aardwolf; four species in three genera Family Eupleridae: Malagasy carnivorans; 10 species in seven genera Family Herpestidae: mongooses and allies; 34 species in 14 genera

Suborder Caniformia
Caniformia
("dog-like")

Family †Amphicyonidae: bear-dogs (9–37 mya) Family Canidae: dogs and allies; 38 species in 12 genera Infraorder Arctoidea

Superfamily Ursoidea

Family †Hemicyonidae: (2–22 mya) Family Ursidae: bears; eight species in five genera

Superfamily Pinnipedia

Family †Enaliarctidae: (23–20 mya?) Family Odobenidae: walrus; one species Family Otariidae: eared seals; 15 species in seven genera Family Phocidae: true seals; 18 species in 13 genera

Superfamily Musteloidea

Family Ailuridae: red panda; one species Family Mephitidae: skunks and stink badgers; 12 species in four genera Family Mustelidae: weasels and allies; 59 species in 22 genera Family Procyonidae: raccoons and allies; 14 species in six genera

Phylogenetic tree[edit]

Brown bear, one of the largest terrestrial carnivorans

A cat and a dog, domesticated carnivorans

The cladogram is based on Flynn (2005).[19]

   Carnivora   

Feliformia

Nimravidae†

Stenoplesictidae†

Percrocutidae†

Nandiniidae
Nandiniidae

Feloidea

Prionodontidae

Barbourofelidae†

Felidae
Felidae

Viverroidea

Viverridae
Viverridae

Herpestoidea

Hyaenidae
Hyaenidae

Herpestidae
Herpestidae

Eupleridae
Eupleridae

   Caniformia   

Amphicyonidae†

Canidae
Canidae

   Arctoidea   

   

Hemicyonidae†

Ursidae
Ursidae

Pinnipedia

Enaliarctidae†

   

Phocidae
Phocidae

   

Otariidae
Otariidae

Odobenidae
Odobenidae

   Musteloidea   

   

Ailuridae
Ailuridae

   

Mephitidae
Mephitidae

   

Procyonidae
Procyonidae

Mustelidae
Mustelidae

See also[edit]

List of carnivorans by population List of species in order Carnivora

References[edit]

^ a b c Heinrich, R.E.; Strait, S.G.; Houde, P. (2008). "Earliest Eocene
Eocene
Miacidae
Miacidae
(Mammalia: Carnivora) from northwestern Wyoming". Journal of Paleontology. 82 (1): 154–162. doi:10.1666/05-118.1.  ^ Bowditch, T. E. 1821. An analysis of the natural classifications of Mammalia for the use of students and travelers J. Smith Paris. 115. (refer pages 24, 33) ^ "Carnivora". Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House.  ^ "Carnivora". Merriam-Webster
Merriam-Webster
Dictionary.  ^ Wang, Xiaoming; Tedford, Richard H.; Dogs: Their Fossil Relatives and Evolutionary History. New York: Columbia University Press, 2008. ISBN 0231135289, p1 ^ a b Eizirik, E.; Murphy, W.J.; Koepfli, K.P.; Johnson, W.E.; Dragoo, J.W.; O'Brien, S.J. (2010). "Pattern and timing of the diversification of the mammalian order Carnivora
Carnivora
inferred from multiple nuclear gene sequences". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 56: 49–63. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2010.01.033. PMID 20138220.  ^ a b c http://animaldiversity.org/accounts/Carnivora/[better source needed] ^ Wang, Xiaoming; Tedford, Richard H. (2008). Dogs: Their Fossil Relatives and Evolutionary History. Columbia University Press, New York. p. 74. ISBN 978-0-231-13529-0.  ^ Dixson, A. F. " Baculum
Baculum
length and copulatory behaviour in carnivores and pinnipeds (Grand Order Ferae)." Journal of Zoology 235.1 (1995): 67-76. ^ Wesley-Hunt, G.D.; Flynn J.J. (2005). Phylogeny of the Carnivora: Basal Relationships Among the Carnivoramorphans, and Assessment of the Position of 'Miacoidea' Relative to Carnivora. Journal of Systematic Palaeontology, 3: 1-28. doi:10.1017/S1477201904001518 ^ Polly, David; Gina D. Wesley-Hunt; Ronald E. Heinrich; Graham Davis & Peter Houde (2006). "Earliest Known Carnivoran Auditory Bulla and Support for a Recent Origin of Crown- Clade
Clade
Carnivora
Carnivora
(Eutheria, Mammalia)" (PDF). Palaeontology. 49 (5): 1019–1027. doi:10.1111/j.1475-4983.2006.00586.x. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2010-11-18.  ^ a b c Kemp, T.S. (2005). The Origin and Evolution of Mammals. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-850760-4.  ^ a b Wesley-Hunt, Gina D.; John J. Flynn (2005). "Phylogeny of the Carnivores". Journal of Systematic Palaeontology. 3: 1–28. doi:10.1017/S1477201904001518. Archived from the original on 2010-11-18.  ^ a b Wesley-Hunt, Gina D.; Lars Werdelin (2005). "Basicranial morphology and phylogenetic position of the upper Eocene carnivoramorphan Quercygale" (PDF). Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. 50 (4): 837–846. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 27, 2007.  ^ Johnson, W.E.; Eizirik, E.; Pecon-Slattery, J.; Murphy, W.J.; Antunes, A.; Teeling, E.; O'Brien, S.J. (2006). "The Late Miocene Radiation of Modern Felidae: A Genetic Assessment". Science. 311: 73–77. doi:10.1126/science.1122277. PMID 16400146.  ^ Wesley-Hunt, Gina D. (2005). "The Morphological Diversification of Carnivores
Carnivores
in North America". Paleobiology. 31: 35–55. doi:10.1666/0094-8373(2005)031<0035:TMDOCI>2.0.CO;2. ISSN 0094-8373. [permanent dead link] ^ Wilson, D.E.; Mittermeier, R.A., eds. (2009). Handbook of the Mammals of the World, Volume 1: Carnivora. Barcelona: Lynx
Lynx
Edicions. pp. 50–658. ISBN 978-84-96553-49-1.  ^ Wozencraft, W.C. (2005). "Order Carnivora". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal
Mammal
Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 548–559. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.  ^ Flynn, J. J.; Finarelli, J. A.; Zehr, S.; Hsu, J.; Nedbal, M. A. (2005). "Molecular phylogeny of the Carnivora
Carnivora
(Mammalia): Assessing the impact of increased sampling on resolving enigmatic relationships". Systematic Biology. 54 (2): 317–37. doi:10.1080/10635150590923326. PMID 16012099. 

External links[edit]

Wikispecies
Wikispecies
has information related to Carnivora

The Wikibook Dichotomous Key has a page on the topic of: Carnivora

Wikisource
Wikisource
has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article Carnivora.

High-Resolution Images of Carnivore
Carnivore
Brains

v t e

Extant mammal orders

Kingdom Animalia Phylum Chordata Subphylum Vertebrata (unranked) Amniota

Yinotheria

Australosphenida

Monotremata (Platypus and echidnas)

Theria

Metatheria ( Marsupial
Marsupial
inclusive)

Ameridelphia

Paucituberculata (Shrew opossums) Didelphimorphia (Opossums)

Australidelphia

Microbiotheria
Microbiotheria
(Monito del monte) Notoryctemorphia ( Marsupial
Marsupial
moles) Dasyuromorphia
Dasyuromorphia
(Quolls and dunnarts) Peramelemorphia
Peramelemorphia
(Bilbies and bandicoots) Diprotodontia
Diprotodontia
(Kangaroos and relatives)

Eutheria ( Placental
Placental
inclusive)

Atlantogenata

Xenarthra

Cingulata (Armadillos) Pilosa
Pilosa
(Anteaters and sloths)

Afrotheria

Afrosoricida
Afrosoricida
(Tenrecs and golden moles) Macroscelidea (Elephant shrews) Tubulidentata (Aardvark) Hyracoidea (Hyraxes) Proboscidea
Proboscidea
(Elephants) Sirenia
Sirenia
(Dugongs and manatees)

Boreoeutheria

Laurasiatheria

Eulipotyphla
Eulipotyphla
(Hedgehogs, shrews, moles and relatives) Chiroptera (Bats) Pholidota
Pholidota
(Pangolins) Carnivora
Carnivora
(Dogs, cats and relatives) Perissodactyla (Odd-toed ungulates) Artiodactyla (Even-toed ungulates and cetaceans)

Euarchontoglires

Rodentia (Rodents) Lagomorpha
Lagomorpha
(Rabbits and pikas) Scandentia (Treeshrews) Dermoptera (Colugos) Primates

v t e

Extant Carnivora
Carnivora
species

Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Mammalia Infraclass: Eutheria Superorder: Laurasiatheria

Suborder Feliformia

Nandiniidae

Nandinia

African palm civet
African palm civet
(N. binotata)

Herpestidae (Mongooses)

Atilax

Marsh mongoose
Marsh mongoose
(A. paludinosus)

Bdeogale

Bushy-tailed mongoose
Bushy-tailed mongoose
(B. crassicauda) Jackson's mongoose
Jackson's mongoose
(B. jacksoni) Black-footed mongoose
Black-footed mongoose
(B. nigripes)

Crossarchus

Alexander's kusimanse
Alexander's kusimanse
(C. alexandri) Angolan kusimanse
Angolan kusimanse
(C. ansorgei) Common kusimanse
Common kusimanse
(C. obscurus) Flat-headed kusimanse
Flat-headed kusimanse
(C. platycephalus)

Cynictis

Yellow mongoose
Yellow mongoose
(C. penicillata)

Dologale

Pousargues's mongoose
Pousargues's mongoose
(D. dybowskii)

Galerella

Angolan slender mongoose
Angolan slender mongoose
(G. flavescens) Black mongoose
Black mongoose
(G. nigrata) Somalian slender mongoose
Somalian slender mongoose
(G. ochracea) Cape gray mongoose
Cape gray mongoose
(G. pulverulenta) Slender mongoose
Slender mongoose
(G. sanguinea)

Helogale

Ethiopian dwarf mongoose
Ethiopian dwarf mongoose
(H. hirtula) Common dwarf mongoose
Common dwarf mongoose
(H. parvula)

Herpestes

Short-tailed mongoose
Short-tailed mongoose
(H. brachyurus) Indian gray mongoose
Indian gray mongoose
(H. edwardsii) Indian brown mongoose
Indian brown mongoose
(H. fuscus) Egyptian mongoose
Egyptian mongoose
(H. ichneumon) Small Asian mongoose
Small Asian mongoose
(H. javanicus) Long-nosed mongoose
Long-nosed mongoose
(H. naso) Collared mongoose
Collared mongoose
(H. semitorquatus) Ruddy mongoose
Ruddy mongoose
(H. smithii) Crab-eating mongoose
Crab-eating mongoose
(H. urva) Stripe-necked mongoose
Stripe-necked mongoose
(H. vitticollis)

Ichneumia

White-tailed mongoose
White-tailed mongoose
(I. albicauda)

Liberiictus

Liberian mongoose
Liberian mongoose
(L. kuhni)

Mungos

Gambian mongoose
Gambian mongoose
(M. gambianus) Banded mongoose
Banded mongoose
(M. mungo)

Paracynictis

Selous' mongoose
Selous' mongoose
(P. selousi)

Rhynchogale

Meller's mongoose
Meller's mongoose
(R. melleri)

Suricata

Meerkat
Meerkat
(S. suricatta)

Hyaenidae (Hyenas)

Crocuta

Spotted hyena
Spotted hyena
(C. crocuta)

Hyaena

Brown hyena
Brown hyena
(H. brunnea) Striped hyena
Striped hyena
(H. hyaena)

Proteles

Aardwolf
Aardwolf
(P. cristatus)

Felidae

Large family listed below

Viverridae

Large family listed below

Eupleridae

Small family listed below

Family Felidae

Felinae

Acinonyx

Cheetah
Cheetah
(A. jubatus)

Caracal

Caracal
Caracal
(C. caracal) African golden cat
African golden cat
(C. aurata)

Catopuma

Bay cat
Bay cat
(C. badia) Asian golden cat
Asian golden cat
(C. temminckii)

Felis

European wildcat
European wildcat
(F. silvestris) African wildcat
African wildcat
(F. lybica) Jungle cat
Jungle cat
(F. chaus) Black-footed cat
Black-footed cat
(F. nigripes) Sand cat
Sand cat
(F. margarita) Chinese mountain cat
Chinese mountain cat
(F. bieti) Domestic cat
Domestic cat
(F. catus)

Leopardus

Ocelot
Ocelot
(L. pardalis) Margay
Margay
(L. wiedii) Pampas cat
Pampas cat
(L. colocola) Geoffroy's cat
Geoffroy's cat
(L. geoffroyi) Kodkod
Kodkod
(L. guigna) Andean mountain cat
Andean mountain cat
(L. jacobita) Oncilla
Oncilla
(L. tigrinus) Southern tigrina
Southern tigrina
(L. guttulus)

Leptailurus

Serval
Serval
(L. serval)

Lynx

Canadian lynx (L. canadensis) Eurasian lynx
Eurasian lynx
(L. lynx) Iberian lynx
Iberian lynx
(L. pardinus) Bobcat
Bobcat
(L. rufus)

Otocolobus

Pallas's cat
Pallas's cat
(O. manul)

Pardofelis

Marbled cat
Marbled cat
(P. marmorata)

Prionailurus

Fishing cat
Fishing cat
(P. viverrinus) Leopard cat
Leopard cat
(P. bengalensis) Sundaland leopard cat (P. javanensis) Flat-headed cat
Flat-headed cat
(P. planiceps) Rusty-spotted cat
Rusty-spotted cat
(P. rubiginosus)

Puma

Cougar
Cougar
(P. concolor)

Herpailurus

Jaguarundi
Jaguarundi
(H. yagouaroundi)

Pantherinae

Panthera

Lion
Lion
(P. leo) Jaguar
Jaguar
(P. onca) Leopard
Leopard
(P. pardus) Tiger
Tiger
(P. tigris) Snow leopard
Snow leopard
(P. uncia)

Neofelis

Clouded leopard
Clouded leopard
(N. nebulosa) Sunda clouded leopard
Sunda clouded leopard
(N. diardi)

Family Viverridae
Viverridae
(includes Civets)

Paradoxurinae

Arctictis

Binturong
Binturong
(A. binturong)

Arctogalidia

Small-toothed palm civet
Small-toothed palm civet
(A. trivirgata)

Macrogalidia

Sulawesi palm civet
Sulawesi palm civet
(M. musschenbroekii)

Paguma

Masked palm civet
Masked palm civet
(P. larvata)

Paradoxurus

Golden wet-zone palm civet (P. aureus) Asian palm civet
Asian palm civet
(P. hermaphroditus) Jerdon's palm civet (P. jerdoni) Golden palm civet
Golden palm civet
(P. zeylonensis)

Hemigalinae

Chrotogale

Owston's palm civet
Owston's palm civet
(C. owstoni)

Cynogale

Otter civet
Otter civet
(C. bennettii)

Diplogale

Hose's palm civet
Hose's palm civet
(D. hosei)

Hemigalus

Banded palm civet
Banded palm civet
(H. derbyanus)

Prionodontinae (Asiatic linsangs)

Prionodon

Banded linsang
Banded linsang
(P. linsang) Spotted linsang
Spotted linsang
(P. pardicolor)

Viverrinae

Civettictis

African civet
African civet
(C. civetta)

Genetta (Genets)

Abyssinian genet
Abyssinian genet
(G. abyssinica) Angolan genet
Angolan genet
(G. angolensis) Bourlon's genet
Bourlon's genet
(G. bourloni) Crested servaline genet
Crested servaline genet
(G. cristata) Common genet
Common genet
(G. genetta) Johnston's genet
Johnston's genet
(G. johnstoni) Rusty-spotted genet
Rusty-spotted genet
(G. maculata) Pardine genet
Pardine genet
(G. pardina) Aquatic genet
Aquatic genet
(G. piscivora) King genet
King genet
(G. poensis) Servaline genet
Servaline genet
(G. servalina) Haussa genet
Haussa genet
(G. thierryi) Cape genet
Cape genet
(G. tigrina) Giant forest genet
Giant forest genet
(G. victoriae)

Poiana

African linsang
African linsang
(P. richardsonii) Leighton's linsang
Leighton's linsang
(P. leightoni)

Viverra

Malabar large-spotted civet
Malabar large-spotted civet
(V. civettina) Large-spotted civet
Large-spotted civet
(V. megaspila) Malayan civet
Malayan civet
(V. tangalunga) Large Indian civet
Large Indian civet
(V. zibetha)

Viverricula

Small Indian civet
Small Indian civet
(V. indica)

Family Eupleridae

Euplerinae

Cryptoprocta

Fossa (C. ferox)

Eupleres

Eastern falanouc
Eastern falanouc
(E. goudotii) Western falanouc (E. major)

Fossa

Malagasy civet
Malagasy civet
(F. fossana)

Galidiinae

Galidia

Ring-tailed mongoose
Ring-tailed mongoose
(G. elegans)

Galidictis

Broad-striped Malagasy mongoose
Broad-striped Malagasy mongoose
(G. fasciata) Grandidier's mongoose
Grandidier's mongoose
(G. grandidieri)

Mungotictis

Narrow-striped mongoose
Narrow-striped mongoose
(M. decemlineata)

Salanoia

Brown-tailed mongoose
Brown-tailed mongoose
(S. concolor) Durrell's vontsira (S. durrelli)

Suborder Caniformia
Caniformia
(cont. below)

Ursidae (Bears)

Ailuropoda

Giant panda
Giant panda
(A. melanoleuca)

Helarctos

Sun bear
Sun bear
(H. malayanus)

Melursus

Sloth bear
Sloth bear
(M. ursinus)

Tremarctos

Spectacled bear
Spectacled bear
(T. ornatus)

Ursus

American black bear
American black bear
(U. americanus) Brown bear
Brown bear
(U. arctos) Polar bear
Polar bear
(U. maritimus) Asian black bear
Asian black bear
(U. thibetanus)

Mephitidae

Conepatus (Hog-nosed skunks)

Molina's hog-nosed skunk
Molina's hog-nosed skunk
(C. chinga) Humboldt's hog-nosed skunk
Humboldt's hog-nosed skunk
(C. humboldtii) American hog-nosed skunk
American hog-nosed skunk
(C. leuconotus) Striped hog-nosed skunk
Striped hog-nosed skunk
(C. semistriatus)

Mephitis

Hooded skunk
Hooded skunk
(M. macroura) Striped skunk
Striped skunk
(M. mephitis)

Mydaus

Sunda stink badger
Sunda stink badger
(M. javanensis) Palawan stink badger
Palawan stink badger
(M. marchei)

Spilogale (Spotted skunks)

Southern spotted skunk
Southern spotted skunk
(S. angustifrons) Western spotted skunk
Western spotted skunk
(S. gracilis) Eastern spotted skunk
Eastern spotted skunk
(S. putorius) Pygmy spotted skunk
Pygmy spotted skunk
(S. pygmaea)

Procyonidae

Bassaricyon (Olingos)

Eastern lowland olingo
Eastern lowland olingo
(B. alleni) Northern olingo
Northern olingo
(B. gabbii) Western lowland olingo
Western lowland olingo
(B. medius) Olinguito
Olinguito
(B. neblina)

Bassariscus

Ring-tailed cat
Ring-tailed cat
(B. astutus) Cacomistle
Cacomistle
(B. sumichrasti)

Nasua (Coatis inclusive)

White-nosed coati
White-nosed coati
(N. narica) South American coati
South American coati
(N. nasua)

Nasuella (Coatis inclusive)

Western mountain coati (N. olivacea) Eastern mountain coati (N. meridensis)

Potos

Kinkajou
Kinkajou
(P. flavus)

Procyon

Crab-eating raccoon
Crab-eating raccoon
(P. cancrivorus) Raccoon
Raccoon
(P. lotor) Cozumel raccoon
Cozumel raccoon
(P. pygmaeus)

Ailuridae

Ailurus

Red panda
Red panda
(A. fulgens)

Suborder Caniformia
Caniformia
(cont. above)

Otariidae (Eared seals) (includes fur seals and sea lions) ( Pinniped
Pinniped
inclusive)

Arctocephalus

South American fur seal
South American fur seal
(A. australis) Australasian fur seal (A. forsteri) Galápagos fur seal
Galápagos fur seal
(A. galapagoensis) Antarctic fur seal
Antarctic fur seal
(A. gazella) Juan Fernández fur seal
Juan Fernández fur seal
(A. philippii) Brown fur seal
Brown fur seal
(A. pusillus) Guadalupe fur seal
Guadalupe fur seal
(A. townsendi) Subantarctic fur seal
Subantarctic fur seal
(A. tropicalis)

Callorhinus

Northern fur seal
Northern fur seal
(C. ursinus)

Eumetopias

Steller sea lion
Steller sea lion
(E. jubatus)

Neophoca

Australian sea lion
Australian sea lion
(N. cinerea)

Otaria

South American sea lion
South American sea lion
(O. flavescens)

Phocarctos

New Zealand sea lion
New Zealand sea lion
(P. hookeri)

Zalophus

California sea lion
California sea lion
(Z. californianus) Galápagos sea lion
Galápagos sea lion
(Z. wollebaeki)

Odobenidae ( Pinniped
Pinniped
inclusive)

Odobenus

Walrus
Walrus
(O. rosmarus)

Phocidae (Earless seals) ( Pinniped
Pinniped
inclusive)

Cystophora

Hooded seal
Hooded seal
(C. cristata)

Erignathus

Bearded seal
Bearded seal
(E. barbatus)

Halichoerus

Gray seal (H. grypus)

Histriophoca

Ribbon seal
Ribbon seal
(H. fasciata)

Hydrurga

Leopard
Leopard
seal (H. leptonyx)

Leptonychotes

Weddell seal
Weddell seal
(L. weddellii)

Lobodon

Crabeater seal
Crabeater seal
(L. carcinophagus)

Mirounga (Elephant seals)

Northern elephant seal
Northern elephant seal
(M. angustirostris) Southern elephant seal
Southern elephant seal
(M. leonina)

Monachus

Mediterranean monk seal
Mediterranean monk seal
(M. monachus) Hawaiian monk seal
Hawaiian monk seal
(M. schauinslandi)

Ommatophoca

Ross seal
Ross seal
(O. rossi)

Pagophilus

Harp seal
Harp seal
(P. groenlandicus)

Phoca

Spotted seal
Spotted seal
(P. largha) Harbor seal
Harbor seal
(P. vitulina)

Pusa

Caspian seal
Caspian seal
(P. caspica) Ringed seal
Ringed seal
(P. hispida) Baikal seal
Baikal seal
(P. sibirica)

Canidae

Large family listed below

Mustelidae

Large family listed below

Family Canidae
Canidae
(includes dogs)

Atelocynus

Short-eared dog
Short-eared dog
(A. microtis)

Canis

Side-striped jackal
Side-striped jackal
(C. adustus) African golden wolf
African golden wolf
(C. anthus) Golden jackal
Golden jackal
(C. aureus) Coyote
Coyote
(C. latrans) Gray wolf
Gray wolf
(C. lupus) Black-backed jackal
Black-backed jackal
(C. mesomelas) Red wolf
Red wolf
(C. rufus) Ethiopian wolf
Ethiopian wolf
(C. simensis)

Cerdocyon

Crab-eating fox
Crab-eating fox
(C. thous)

Chrysocyon

Maned wolf
Maned wolf
(C. brachyurus)

Cuon

Dhole
Dhole
(C. alpinus)

Lycalopex

Culpeo
Culpeo
(L. culpaeus) Darwin's fox
Darwin's fox
(L. fulvipes) South American gray fox
South American gray fox
(L. griseus) Pampas fox
Pampas fox
(L. gymnocercus) Sechuran fox
Sechuran fox
(L. sechurae) Hoary fox
Hoary fox
(L. vetulus)

Lycaon

African wild dog
African wild dog
(L. pictus)

Nyctereutes

Raccoon
Raccoon
dog (N. procyonoides)

Otocyon

Bat-eared fox
Bat-eared fox
(O. megalotis)

Speothos

Bush dog
Bush dog
(S. venaticus)

Urocyon

Gray fox
Gray fox
(U. cinereoargenteus) Island fox
Island fox
(U. littoralis)

Vulpes (Foxes)

Bengal fox
Bengal fox
(V. bengalensis) Blanford's fox
Blanford's fox
(V. cana) Cape fox
Cape fox
(V. chama) Corsac fox
Corsac fox
(V. corsac) Tibetan sand fox
Tibetan sand fox
(V. ferrilata) Arctic fox
Arctic fox
(V. lagopus) Kit fox
Kit fox
(V. macrotis) Pale fox
Pale fox
(V. pallida) Rüppell's fox
Rüppell's fox
(V. rueppelli) Swift fox
Swift fox
(V. velox) Red fox
Red fox
(V. vulpes) Fennec fox
Fennec fox
(V. zerda)

Family Mustelidae

Lutrinae (Otters)

Aonyx

African clawless otter
African clawless otter
(A. capensis) Oriental small-clawed otter
Oriental small-clawed otter
(A. cinerea)

Enhydra

Sea otter
Sea otter
(E. lutris)

Hydrictis

Spotted-necked otter
Spotted-necked otter
(H. maculicollis)

Lontra

North American river otter
North American river otter
(L. canadensis) Marine otter
Marine otter
(L. felina) Neotropical otter
Neotropical otter
(L. longicaudis) Southern river otter
Southern river otter
(L. provocax)

Lutra

Eurasian otter
Eurasian otter
(L. lutra) Hairy-nosed otter
Hairy-nosed otter
(L. sumatrana)

Lutrogale

Smooth-coated otter
Smooth-coated otter
(L. perspicillata)

Pteronura

Giant otter
Giant otter
(P. brasiliensis)

Mustelinae (including badgers)

Arctonyx

Hog badger
Hog badger
(A. collaris)

Eira

Tayra
Tayra
(E. barbara)

Galictis

Lesser grison
Lesser grison
(G. cuja) Greater grison
Greater grison
(G. vittata)

Gulo

Wolverine
Wolverine
(G. gulo)

Ictonyx

Saharan striped polecat
Saharan striped polecat
(I. libyca) Striped polecat
Striped polecat
(I. striatus)

Lyncodon

Patagonian weasel
Patagonian weasel
(L. patagonicus)

Martes (Martens)

American marten
American marten
(M. americana) Yellow-throated marten
Yellow-throated marten
(M. flavigula) Beech marten
Beech marten
(M. foina) Nilgiri marten
Nilgiri marten
(M. gwatkinsii) European pine marten
European pine marten
(M. martes) Japanese marten
Japanese marten
(M. melampus) Sable
Sable
(M. zibellina)

Pekania

Fisher (P. pennanti)

Meles

Japanese badger
Japanese badger
(M. anakuma) Asian badger
Asian badger
(M. leucurus) European badger
European badger
(M. meles)

Mellivora

Honey badger
Honey badger
(M. capensis)

Melogale (Ferret-badgers)

Bornean ferret-badger
Bornean ferret-badger
(M. everetti) Chinese ferret-badger
Chinese ferret-badger
(M. moschata) Javan ferret-badger
Javan ferret-badger
(M. orientalis) Burmese ferret-badger
Burmese ferret-badger
(M. personata)

Mustela ( Weasels
Weasels
and Ferrets)

Amazon weasel
Amazon weasel
(M. africana) Mountain weasel
Mountain weasel
(M. altaica) Stoat
Stoat
(M. erminea) Steppe polecat
Steppe polecat
(M. eversmannii) Colombian weasel
Colombian weasel
(M. felipei) Long-tailed weasel
Long-tailed weasel
(M. frenata) Japanese weasel
Japanese weasel
(M. itatsi) Yellow-bellied weasel
Yellow-bellied weasel
(M. kathiah) European mink
European mink
(M. lutreola) Indonesian mountain weasel
Indonesian mountain weasel
(M. lutreolina) Black-footed ferret
Black-footed ferret
(M. nigripes) Least weasel
Least weasel
(M. nivalis) Malayan weasel
Malayan weasel
(M. nudipes) European polecat
European polecat
(M. putorius) Siberian weasel
Siberian weasel
(M. sibirica) Back-striped weasel
Back-striped weasel
(M. strigidorsa) Egyptian weasel
Egyptian weasel
(M. subpalmata)

Neovison (Minks)

American mink
American mink
(N. vison)

Poecilogale

African striped weasel
African striped weasel
(P. albinucha)

Taxidea

American badger
American badger
(T. taxus)

Vormela

Marbled polecat
Marbled polecat
(V. peregusna)

Taxon
Taxon
identifiers

Wd: Q25306 ADW: Carnivora EoL: 7662 EPPO: 1CARNO Fauna Europaea: 12632 GBIF: 732 ITIS: 180539 MSW: 14000001 NCBI: 33554 WoRMS: 2687

Authority control

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