Felidae also known as felids or the cat family are the most specialized hunters of the carnivores. These animals are independent killers. Cats are native to everywhere but Australia and Antarctica. Felids live just about any rough terrain including deserts, forest and even to mountains! The first felids emerged during the Oligocene, about 25 million years ago. In prehistoric times, there was a third subfamily Machairodontinae, which included the “saber-toothed cats” such as the well known Smilodon. Felidae is the biological family of the cats; a member of this family is called a felid. The most familiar felid is the Domestic Cat, which first became around with the humans about 10,000 years ago, this family also includes all the big cats. Most of the felids have similar physical appearances. All the cats of the Felidae family have retractable claws. Excepts for the cheetah they tend to hunt like dogs and bowl over their prey when hunting. When it comes to toes cats gave five toes on the forefeet and four on their hind feet. Felids are usually solitary. An exception is the African lion, which forms prides centered around maternal descent. Males fight with each other for acceptance into these prides. Males are the main defenders of the prides. Extant felids belong to one of two subfamilies: Pantherinae ( which include the Lion, the Tiger, the Jaguar, and the Leopard), and Felidae (which include the Cougar, the Cheetah, Lynxes and the Caracal, along with the Domestic Cat.
Author: Aaron B