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The honey badger (Mellivora capensis), also known as the ratel (/ˈreɪtəl/ or /ˈrɑːtəl/),[3] is the only species in the mustelid subfamily Mellivorinae
Mellivorinae
and its only genus Mellivora. It is native to Africa, Southwest Asia, and the Indian subcontinent. Despite its name, the honey badger does not closely resemble other badger species; instead, it bears more anatomical similarities to weasels. It is classed as Least Concern
Least Concern
rather than a threatened species by the IUCN
IUCN
owing to its extensive range and general environmental adaptations. It is primarily a carnivorous species and has few natural predators because of its thick skin and ferocious defensive abilities.

Contents

1 Taxonomy

1.1 Subspecies

2 Physical description 3 Behaviour

3.1 Habits 3.2 Diet

4 Range 5 Relationships with humans 6 Notes 7 References 8 External links

Taxonomy

Skeleton from the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle

The honey badger is the only species of the genus Mellivora. Although in the 1860s it was assigned to the badger subfamily, the Melinae, it is now generally agreed that it bears very few similarities to the Melinae. It is much more closely related to the marten subfamily, Mustelinae, but furthermore is assigned its own subfamily, Mellivorinae.[4] Differences between Mellivorinae
Mellivorinae
and Melinae
Melinae
include differences in their dentition formulae. Though not in the same subfamily as the wolverines, which are a genus of large-sized and atypical Mustelinae, the honey badger can be regarded as another, analogous, form of outsized weasel or polecat. The species first appeared during the middle Pliocene
Pliocene
in Asia. Its closest relation was the extinct genus Eomellivora, which is known from the upper Miocene, and evolved into several different species throughout the whole Pliocene
Pliocene
in both the Old and New World.[5] Subspecies As of 2005[update], 12 subspecies are recognised.[6] Points taken into consideration in assigning different subspecies include size and the extent of whiteness or greyness on the back.[7]

Indian Honey
Honey
Badger
Badger
Drinking Water from natural stream

Subspecies Trinomial authority Description Range Synonyms

Cape ratel Mellivora capensis capensis

Schreber, 1776

South and southwestern Africa mellivorus (G. [Baron] Cuvier, 1798) ratel (Sparrman, 1777) typicus (A. Smith, 1833) vernayi (Roberts, 1932)

Ethiopian ratel Mellivora capensis abyssinica Hollister, 1910

Ethiopia

Turkmenian ratel Mellivora capensis buechneri Baryshnikov, 2000 Similar to the subspecies indica and inaurita, but is distinguished by its larger size and narrower postorbital constriction[8] Turkmenistan

Lake Chad ratel Mellivora capensis concisa Thomas and Wroughton, 1907 The coat on the back consists largely of very long, pure white bristle-hairs amongst long, fine, black underfur. Its distinguishing feature from other subspecies is the lack of the usual white bristle-hairs in the lumbar area[9] Sahel
Sahel
and Sudan
Sudan
zones, as far as Somaliland brockmani (Wroughton and Cheesman, 1920) buchanani (Thomas, 1925)

Black ratel Mellivora capensis cottoni

Lydekker, 1906 The fur is typically entirely black, with thin and harsh hairs.[9] Ghana, northeastern Congo sagulata (Hollister, 1910)

Nepalese ratel Mellivora capensis inaurita Hodgson, 1836 Distinguished from indica by its longer, much woollier coat and having overgrown hair on its heels[10] Nepal and contiguous areas east of it

Indian ratel Mellivora capensis indica

Kerr, 1792 Distinguished from capensis by its smaller size, paler fur and having a less distinct lateral white band separating the upper white and lower black areas of the body[11] Western Middle Asia
Middle Asia
northward to the Ustyurt Plateau and eastward to Amu Darya. Outside the former Soviet Union, its range includes Afghanistan, Iran (except the southwestern part), western Pakistan and western India mellivorus (Bennett, 1830) ratel (Horsfield, 1851) ratelus (Fraser, 1862)

White-backed ratel Mellivora capensis leuconota Sclater, 1867 The entire upper side from the face to half-way along the tail is pure creamy white with little admixture of black hairs[9] West Africa, southern Morocco, former French Congo

Kenyan ratel Mellivora capensis maxwelli Thomas, 1923

Kenya

Arabian ratel Mellivora capensis pumilio Pocock, 1946

Hadhramaut, southern Arabia

Speckled ratel Mellivora capensis signata Pocock, 1909 Although its pelage is the normal dense white over the crown, this pale colour starts to thin out over the neck and shoulders, continuing to the rump where it fades into black. It possesses an extra lower molar on the left side of the jaw[9] Sierra Leone

Persian ratel Mellivora capensis wilsoni Cheesman, 1920

Southwestern Iran and Iraq

Physical description

Skull, as illustrated by N. N. Kondakov

The honey badger has a fairly long body, but is distinctly thick-set and broad across the back. Its skin is remarkably loose, and allows it to turn and twist freely within it.[12] The skin around the neck is 6 millimetres (0.24 in) thick, an adaptation to fighting conspecifics.[13] The head is small and flat, with a short muzzle. The eyes are small, and the ears are little more than ridges on the skin,[12] another possible adaptation to avoiding damage while fighting.[13] The honey badger has short and sturdy legs, with five toes on each foot. The feet are armed with very strong claws, which are short on the hind legs and remarkably long on the forelimbs. It is a partially plantigrade animal whose soles are thickly padded and naked up to the wrists. The tail is short and is covered in long hairs, save for below the base. Honey
Honey
badgers are the largest terrestrial mustelids in Africa. Adults measure 23 to 28 cm (9.1 to 11.0 in) in shoulder height and 55–77 cm (22–30 in) in body length, with the tail adding another 12–30 cm (4.7–11.8 in). Females are smaller than males.[12][14] In Africa, males weigh 9 to 16 kg (20 to 35 lb) while females weigh 5 to 10 kg (11 to 22 lb) on average. The mean weight of adult honey badgers from different areas has been reported at anywhere between 6.4 to 12 kg (14 to 26 lb), with a median of roughly 9 kg (20 lb), per various studies. This positions it as the third largest known badger, after the European badger
European badger
and hog badger, and fourth largest extant terrestrial mustelid after additionally the wolverine.[15][16][17][18][19] However, the average weight of three wild females from Iraq
Iraq
was reported as 18 kg (40 lb), about the typical size of the males from largest-bodied populations of wolverines or from male European badgers in late autumn, indicating that they can attain much larger than typical sizes in favorable conditions.[20][21] Skull
Skull
length is 13.9–14.5 cm (5.5–5.7 in) in males and 13 cm (5.1 in) for females.[22][23] There are two pairs of mammae.[24] The honey badger possesses an anal pouch which, unusual among mustelids, is eversible,[25] a trait shared with hyenas and mongooses. The smell of the pouch is reportedly "suffocating", and may assist in calming bees when raiding beehives.[26] The skull bears little similarity to that of the European badger, and greatly resembles a larger version of that of a marbled polecat.[27] The skull is very solidly built, with that of adults having no trace of an independent bone structure. The braincase is broader than that of dogs.

Dentition

The dental formula is: 3.1.3.13.1.3.1. The teeth often display signs of irregular development, with some teeth being exceptionally small, set at unusual angles or absent altogether. Honey
Honey
badgers of the subspecies signata have a second lower molar on the left side of their jaws, but not the right. Although it feeds predominantly on soft foods, the honey badger's cheek teeth are often extensively worn. The canine teeth are exceptionally short for carnivores.[28] The tongue has sharp, backward-pointing papillae which assist it in processing tough foods.[29] The winter fur is long (being 40–50 mm (1.6–2.0 in) long on the lower back), and consists of sparse, coarse, bristle-like hairs lacking underfur. Hairs are even sparser on the flanks, belly and groin. The summer fur is shorter (being only 15 mm (0.59 in) long on the back) and even sparser, with the belly being half bare. The sides of the heads and lower body are pure black. A large white band covers their upper bodies, beginning from the top of their heads down to the base of their tails.[30] Honey
Honey
badgers of the cottoni subspecies are unique in being completely black.[9] Behaviour Habits Although mostly solitary, honey badgers may hunt together in pairs during the May breeding season.[29] Little is known of the honey badger's breeding habits. Its gestation period is thought to last six months, usually resulting in two cubs, which are born blind. They vocalise through plaintive whines. Its lifespan in the wild is unknown, though captive individuals have been known to live for approximately 24 years.[7] Honey
Honey
badgers live alone in self-dug holes. They are skilled diggers, able to dig tunnels into hard ground in 10 minutes. These burrows usually have only one passage and a nesting chamber and are usually only 1–3 m (3–10 ft) long. They do not place bedding into the nesting chamber.[31] Although they usually dig their own burrows, they may take over disused aardvark and warthog holes or termite mounds.[29] Honey
Honey
badgers are intelligent animals and are one of a few species known to be capable of using tools. In the 1997 documentary series Land of the Tiger, a honey badger in India was filmed making use of a tool; the animal rolled a log and stood on it to reach a kingfisher fledgling stuck up in the roots coming from the ceiling in an underground cave.[32] A video made at the Moholoholo rehab centre in South Africa
Africa
showed a pair of honey badgers using sticks, a rake, heaps of mud and stones to escape from their walled pit.[33] As with other mustelids of relatively large size, such as wolverines and badgers, honey badgers are notorious for their strength, ferocity and toughness. They have been known to savagely and fearlessly attack almost any kind of animal when escape is impossible, reportedly even repelling much larger predators such as lions.[34] Bee
Bee
stings, porcupine quills, and animal bites rarely penetrate their skin. If horses, cattle, or Cape buffalos intrude upon a ratel's burrow, it will attack them. They are virtually tireless in combat and can wear out much larger animals in physical confrontations.[28] The aversion of most predators toward hunting honey badgers has led to the suggestion that the countershaded coats of cheetah cubs evolved in imitation of the honey badger's colouration, which warns off predators.[35] In rare cases, some lions are persistent enough to have preyed on honey badgers.[36][37] Leopards are also occasionally mentioned as predators of honey badgers but, as far as is known, cases of successful predation on adult honey badgers is even rarer.[38][39] The voice of the honey badger is a hoarse "khrya-ya-ya-ya" sound. When mating, males emit loud grunting sounds.[40] Cubs vocalise through plaintive whines.[7] When confronting dogs, honey badgers scream like bear cubs.[41] Diet Next to the wolverine, the honey badger has the least specialised diet of the weasel family.[13] In undeveloped areas, honey badgers may hunt at any time of the day, though they become nocturnal in places with high human populations. When hunting, they trot with their foretoes turned in. Honey
Honey
badgers favour bee honey, and will often search for beehives to get it, which earns them their name. They are also carnivorous and will eat insects, frogs, tortoises, rodents, turtles, lizards, snakes, eggs, and birds. Honey
Honey
badgers have even been known to chase away young lions and take their kills. They will eat fruit and vegetables, such as berries, roots and bulbs.[29] Despite popular belief, there is no evidence that honeyguides (a bird species that eats bee larvae) guide the honey badger.[42][43] They may hunt frogs and rodents, such as gerbils and ground squirrels, by digging them out of their burrows. Honey
Honey
badgers are able to feed on tortoises without difficulty, due to their powerful jaws. They kill and eat snakes, even highly venomous or large ones, such as cobras. They have been known to dig up human corpses in India.[44] They devour all parts of their prey, including skin, hair, feathers, flesh and bones, holding their food down with their forepaws.[45] When seeking vegetable food, they lift stones or tear bark from trees.[29] Range The species ranges through most of sub-Saharan Africa, from the Western Cape, South Africa, to southern Morocco and southwestern Algeria and outside Africa
Africa
through Arabia, Iran and western Asia to Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan
and the Indian Peninsula. It is known to range from sea level to as much as 2,600 m above sea level in the Moroccan High Atlas and 4,000 m in Ethiopia's Bale Mountains.[1] Relationships with humans Honey
Honey
badgers often become serious poultry predators. Because of their strength and persistence, they are difficult to deter. They are known to rip thick planks from hen-houses or burrow underneath stone foundations. Surplus killing
Surplus killing
is common during these events, with one incident resulting in the death of 17 Muscovy ducks and 36 chickens.[29] Because of the toughness and looseness of their skin, honey badgers are very difficult to kill with dogs. Their skin is hard to penetrate, and its looseness allows them to twist and turn on their attackers when held. The only safe grip on a honey badger is on the back of the neck. The skin is also tough enough to resist several machete blows. The only sure way of killing them quickly is through a blow to the skull with a club or a shot to the head with a gun, as their skin is almost impervious to arrows and spears.[46] During the British occupation of Basra in 2007, rumours of "man-eating badgers" emerged from the local population, including allegations that these beasts were released by the British troops, something that the British categorically denied.[47][48] A British army spokesperson said that the badgers were "native to the region but rare in Iraq" and "are usually only dangerous to humans if provoked".[49] The director of Basra's veterinary hospital, Mushtaq Abdul-Mahdi, confirmed that honey badgers had been seen in the area as early as 1986. The deputy dean of Basra's veterinary college, Dr. Ghazi Yaqub Azzam, speculated that "the badgers were being driven towards the city because of flooding in marshland north of Basra."[48] The event received coverage in the Western press during the 2007 silly season.[50] In many parts of North India, honey badgers are reported to have been living in the close vicinity of human dwellings, leading to many instances of attacks on poultry, small livestock animals and, sometimes, even children.[citation needed] They retaliate fiercely when attacked.[citation needed] According to a 1941 volume of The Fauna of British India, the honey badger has also been reported to dig up human corpses in that country.[51] In Kenya, the honey badger is a major reservoir of rabies[52][53] and suspected to be a significant contributor to the sylvatic cycle of the disease.[54] Videos of honey badgers for children have included the 2011 Crazy Nastyass Honey
Honey
Badger[55] and a Disney Junior
Disney Junior
series, The Lion
Lion
Guard, in 2015.[56] Notes

^ a b Begg, K.; Begg, C. & Abramov, A. (2008). "Mellivora capensis". IUCN Red List
IUCN Red List
of Threatened Species. Version 2008. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 21 March 2009.  Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is of least concern ^ Steve Jackson. " Honey
Honey
Badger..." Archived from the original on 14 December 2001. Retrieved 6 July 2011.  ^ "ratel, n.2". The Oxford English Dictionary Online. Oxford University Press. March 2009. Retrieved 9 November 2010.  ^ Vanderhaar, Jana M. & Yeen Ten Hwang (30 July 2003). "MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 721, pp. 18, 3 figs. Mellivora capensis. Mellivora capensis". American Society of Mammalogists.  ^ Heptner & Sludskii 2002, pp. 1209–1210 ^ 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. p. 612. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.  ^ a b c Rosevear 1974, p. 123 ^ Baryshnikov G. (2000). "A new subspecies of the honey badger Mellivora capensis from Central Asia". Acta theriologica 45(1): 45–55. abstract. ^ a b c d e Rosevear 1974, pp. 126–127 ^ Pocock 1941, p. 462 ^ Pocock 1941, p. 458 ^ a b c Rosevear 1974, p. 113 ^ a b c Kingdon 1989, p. 87 ^ "Kingdon 1977. The Virtual Sett – The data". badgers.org.  ^ Vanderhaar, J. M., & Hwang, Y. T. (2003). Mellivora capensis. Mammalian Species, 1-8. ^ Lenain, D., & Ostrowski, S. (1998). Opportunistic predation of trapped mammals by the ratel, Mellivora capensis wilsoni. Zoology in the Middle East, 16(1), 13-18. ^ Wroe, S., & Milne, N. (2007). Convergence and remarkably consistent constraint in the evolution of carnivore skull shape. Evolution, 61(5), 1251-1260. ^ Sheppey, K., & Bernard, R. T. F. (1984). Relative brain size in the mammalian carnivores of the Cape Province of South Africa. African Zoology, 19(4), 305-308. ^ Ahasan, S. A., Iqbal, M. S., & Shakif-Ul-Azam, M. (2010). Prevalence of parasitic infestations in captive wild carnivores at Dhaka Zoo. Magazine of Zoo Outreach Organisation, 25(6), 34. ^ Mohammed, A. H. S., Haider, S. K., & Salman, R. A. (2014). Morphological study of the lingual papillae in Mellivora capensis tongue. Journal of US-China Medical Science, 11(1), 42-46. ^ Kowalczyk, R., Jȩdrzejewska, B., & Zalewski, A. (2003). Annual and circadian activity patterns of badgers (Meles meles) in Białowieża Primeval Forest (eastern Poland) compared with other Palaearctic populations. Journal of Biogeography, 30(3), 463-472. ^ Heptner & Sludskii 2002, pp. 1216–1217 ^ " Honey
Honey
badger videos, photos and facts – Mellivora capensis". ARKive. Retrieved 2012-11-27.  ^ Pocock 1941, p. 456 ^ For illustrations, see Ewer 1973, p. 98. ^ Kingdon 1989, p. 89 ^ Pocock 1941, p. 1214 ^ a b Rosevear 1974, pp. 114–16 ^ a b c d e f Rosevear 1974, pp. 117–18 ^ Heptner & Sludskii 2002, p. 1213 ^ Heptner & Sludskii 2002, p. 1225 ^ India Land of the Tiger
Land of the Tiger
பாகம் 4 – ஆங்கிலம். DailyMotion Retrieved on 2015-12-07. Archived 21 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine. ^ " Honey
Honey
Badger
Badger
Houdini - Honey
Honey
Badgers: Masters of Mayhem - Natural World - BBC Two : videos". BBC.  ^ Hunter, Luke (2011). Carnivores of the World. Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-0-691-15228-8 ^ Eaton, R. L. 1976. "A possible case of mimicry in larger mammals". Evolution 30:853–856.] ^ Eloff, F. C. 1984. Food ecology of the Kalahari lion Panthera
Panthera
leo vernayi. Koedoe 27:249–258. ^ Palomares, F., & Caro, T. M. (1999). Interspecific killing among mammalian carnivores. The American Naturalist, 153(5), 492-508. ^ Braczkowski, A., Watson, L., Coulson, D., & Randall, R. (2012). Diet of leopards in the southern Cape, South Africa. African Journal of Ecology, 50(3), 377-380. ^ Hayward, M. W., Henschel, P., O'brien, J., Hofmeyr, M., Balme, G., & Kerley, G. I. H. (2006). Prey preferences of the leopard ( Panthera
Panthera
pardus). Journal of Zoology, 270(2), 298-313. ^ Heptner & Sludskii 2002, p. 1228 ^ Pocock 1941, p. 465 ^ Dean, W. R. J.; Siegfried, W. Roy; MacDonald, I. A. W. (1 March 1990). "The Fallacy, Fact, and Fate of Guiding Behavior in the Greater Honeyguide". Conservation Biology. 4 (1): 99–101. doi:10.1111/j.1523-1739.1990.tb00272.x. Retrieved 11 March 2013.  ^ Yong, Ed (September 19, 2011). "Lies, damned lies, and honey badgers". Kalmbach. Retrieved 11 March 2013.  ^ Pocock 1941, p. 464 ^ Rosevear 1974, p. 120 ^ Rosevear 1974, p. 116 ^ Philp, Catherine (2007-07-12), "Bombs, guns, gangs – now Basra falls prey to the monster badger", The Times ^ a b BBC News (2007-07-12) "British blamed for Basra badgers", BBC ^ Baker, Graeme (2007-07-13), ""British troops blamed for badger plague", The Telegraph ^ Weaver, Matthew (2007-07-12), "Basra badger rumour mill", The Guardian ^ Pocock, R. I. (1941). Fauna of British India: Mammals Volume 2. London: Taylor and Francis. p. 464. ^ Hans Kruuk (2002). Hunter and Hunted: Relationships between Carnivores and People. Cambridge University Press. p. 94. ISBN 978-0-521-89109-7.  ^ W.K.Chong, RABIES IN KENYA, Southern and Eastern African Rabies Group ^ Clive Alfred Spinage (2012). African Ecology: Benchmarks and Historical Perspectives. Springer. p. 1141. ISBN 978-3-642-22871-1.  ^ A Chat With Randall: On Nasty Honey
Honey
Badgers, Bernie Madoff And Fame. Forbes
Forbes
(2011-04-21). Retrieved on 2011-11-07. ^ "" Lion
Lion
King spin-off The Lion
Lion
Guard: Return of the Roar sneak peek - EW.com". Entertainment Weekly's EW.com. 

References

Ewer, RF (1973). The Carnivores. Cornell University Press. ISBN 978-0-8014-8493-3.  Heptner, V. G.; Sludskii, A. A. (2002). Mammals of the Soviet Union. Vol. II, part 1b, Carnivores (Mustelidae). Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Libraries and National Science Foundation. ISBN 90-04-08876-8.  Kingdon, Jonathan (1989). East African mammals, Volume 3 : an atlas of evolution in Africa. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0-226-43721-3.  Pocock, R. I. (1941). Fauna of British India: Mammals Volume 2. London: Taylor and Francis.  Rosevear, Donovan Reginald (1974). The Carnivores of West Africa. London: British Museum (Natural History). ISBN 978-0-565-00723-2. 

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mellivora capensis.

Wikispecies
Wikispecies
has information related to Mellivora capensis

Vanderhaar, Jane M.; Hwang, Yeen Ten (30 July 2003). "Mellivora capensis" (PDF). Mammalian Species (721): 1–8. 

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 (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
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 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 identifiers

Wd: Q173128 ADW: Mellivora_capensis ARKive: mellivora-capensis EoL: 328035 Fossilworks: 232916 GBIF: 2433695 iNaturalist: 41834 ITIS: 621929 IUCN: 41629 MSW: 14001293 NCBI: 9

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