(suborder Fissipedia, superfamily Miacoidea)
An extinct mammalian family, known from the Palaeocene and Eocene, which is believed to be directly ancestral to the modern carnivores and which itself evolved directly from insectivore stock. Most Miacidae were small animals, typically much the size and shape of a modern weasel (with a long body and short legs), and were arboreal forest dwellers. They had larger brains than their creodont (Creodonta) contemporaries and the carnassials were well developed, formed by the elongated fourth premolar and first molar, the cusps forming ridges.
Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences.