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true carnivores[edit]

Umm. This page is very confusing. It speaks of "true carnivores" but doesn't define what a true carnivore is, compared to, say, all the other carnivores. Are dogs true carnivores? They aren't listed in the (very short) list of "true carnivores." So confusing. PhiloVivero 03:56, 8 Nov 2004 (UTC)


Domestic dogs are not carnivores. What about wild dogs - such as wolves, hyenas and dingoes, are their diets solely carnivorous?--ZayZayEM 02:23, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Classification of animals by diet is tricky, ZayZayEM, even misleading. This order has only been called so because most of these animals are carnivorous and because their jaws and teeth are especially adapted to devouring animals, and their digestive canal is short. Indeed domestic dogs eat almost anything you give them, but that doesn't change their carnivorous nature. I'll tell you something, my parents have a cat that fancies eating cumcumber skins! Yet all cats are carnivorous. Caesarion 19:04, 22 Apr 2005 (UTC)

And, by the way, Hyenas are not dogs...MFuture 03:49, 31 March 2006 (UTC)

Baleen whales[edit]

Are not some baleen whales (e.g. blue whales) carnivores also? I would agree that they are not really predators, but they eat primarily krill, which are undoubtably animals.

Some people might argue that carnivores eat specificly meat, and not animals in general, but the definition of meat varies from culture to culture (sometimes mostly religous). Perhaps this ambiguity should be noted.

Now I realise that we could list a ream of carnivores that aren't mentioned, but mentioning toothed whales suggests that baleen whales definitely aren't. A much shorter (and therefore clearly incomplete(?)) list might be better, or no list at all. Maybe a list of 'famous' carnivores, e.g. lion, tiger, shark, eagle, etc.

--DavidEdwards 02:03, 24 May 2005 (UTC)

I will delete 'toothed'. Pukkie (talk) 13:30, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

Really necessary to name all carnivores?[edit]

A bit excessive, no? --Banana04131 04:06, 3 March 2006 (UTC)

Yes, especially when their kingdom-phylum-class-order-family-species pages contain all that information anyway. Blast 08.11.06 2220 (UTC -5)

Piece of tail[edit]

I've heard the kinkajou is one of only 2 carnivores with a prehensile tail. Can anybody confirm? And what's the other? Trekphiler 00:57, 10 November 2006 (UTC)

Binturong. Dora Nichov 13:17, 2 February 2007 (UTC)


Some information on how carnivores evolved would be interesting - certain animals must, at some stage, adapted to be able to consume other animals as well as plants. A shortage of plant food would be a recurring problem for species, so natural selection would favour those with the ability to digest other animals as well, eventually leading to species that were entirely carnivorous. The balance carnivores provide to ecosystems, creating a stable equilibrium, is another factor. If anyone can find some material on their evolution it would make a great addition to the content of the article. Richard001 05:12, 4 December 2006 (UTC)

There were animals before "plants".

-G —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 03:05, 14 February 2007 (UTC).

Idea for discussion[edit]

I've an idea... Howsabout we roll herbivore, ominvore, carnivore and insectivore into one article with redirects from those terms? One article, animal feeding. Might be better than trying to pad out these terms seperately. If the sections fill out properly then they can be split off at a later date. This will also allow comparisons to be drawn between different feeding groups.AlanD 11:40, 21 February 2007 (UTC)


Wording of Opening Paragraph[edit]

The intro paragraph has confusing wording. In some cases, it indicates that carnivorous animals eat other animal matter, whereas in other instances, it takes a more restricted approach; i.e. implying that "carnivores" usually mean animals that eat other vertebrate meat. Would someone who has been around this Wikipedia entry more than me try to shore up the wording a bit? Tomwithanh 04:09, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

"Plant Material" - Need verifiable sources[edit]

"some plant material is essential for adequate nutrition" -- This statment needs to either have some verifiable sources or it needs to be removed. My first hand experiance holds that this statment is false most of the time, but I don't have sources to cite. Someone please look into correcting this. Jamie Dolan —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:24, 26 March 2008 (UTC) (talk) 01:22, 15 February 2010 (UTC)I agree. And the onus of proof is on whoever wants to add that. You can't add a fact and then leave it for someone else to cite, that's misleading. Otherwise I may as well go to the JFK page and add that "NASA may have killed JFK with earthquakes." [citation needed]

Meat = mammalian flesh?[edit]

"In the strictest sense, meat may refer to the flesh of mammalian species, but in a broader sense the term might be used to refer to any animal tissue considered food."

Who defines meat as meaning mammalian flesh? I've quite often heard people coloquially make a distinction between "meat" and "fish", and sometimes also between meat and poultry, but I don't think I've ever heard anyone exclude reptile/amphibian flesh from a definition of "meat". (Admittedly not many people in the West eat reptiles or amphibians, but some do, and in those cases I have usually heard the flesh described as meat, and never heared it described as "not meat").

Similarly, all the dinosaur books I had as a child (maybe not a particularly good "scientific" source, but probably a good indication of colloquial use) described carnivorous dinosaurs as "meat eaters". (Although I suppose based on current understanding of the relationship between birds and (other) dinosaurs, you could make a case that at least some dinosaur meat would be poultry ;)

I suppose this could be compared to the word "animal", which older times was sometimes used to mean mammals, reptiles, and amphibians, but not fish or birds. (Or in scientific terms, "non-avian tetrapods"). Wardog (talk) 20:09, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

That's certainly the "strictest sense", but since it has no citation, feel free to change it.--Curtis Clark (talk) 00:22, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
I think they may have been one of my contributions. I think we can agree you can't get much stricter... per Curtis feel free to modify as you please - replacing with citable material would be great.--ZayZayEM (talk) 02:42, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Crown Clade[edit]

"Prehistoric mammals of the crown-clade Carnivoramorpha (Carnivora and Miacoidea without Creodonta)" - according to the article on crown clades, Carnivoramorpha is not a crown clade because it is not delimited by living species. In other words, Carnivora might be a crown clade, but Carnivoramorpha(ie including miacids) is *not*. Should I change this or is the crown clade article wrong? ErikHaugen (talk) 16:46, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Ah, I see I was wrong, there are in fact miacids in the carnivore crown clade. Nothing to see here. ErikHaugen (talk) 20:17, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

T rex[edit]

So according to this T Rex had a diet consisting of less than 70% meat, thats what it takes to be a Hypercarnivore, but T rex is said on both pages not to be that kind. So now T Rex ate a maximum of 31% plants!? Spinodontosaurus (talk) 17:21, 15 December 2009 (UTC)

Vitamin C biosynthesis[edit]

Should we add that carnivores can synthesize the nutrients that many herbivores and omnivores must obtain from their diet? HyborianRanger (talk) 04:09, 21 March 2010 (UTC)

Obligate carnivores[edit]

What's the significance of the term obligate carnivore? Are hypercarnivores not obligate carnivores, because some of their diet may consist of non-animal food? I think that section needs to be made clearer.-- (talk) 20:54, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

  • They are two distinct classification. "Obligate" indicates whether carnivory is an 'obligation' of the organism - they must eat meat (or they won't get required nutrients) - hyper-, meso-, hypo- refers to the level of carnivory (what % of diet is meat).ZayZayEM (talk) 00:41, 19 February 2012 (UTC)

Insectivorous Birds[edit]

If you're keeping insectivores in the definition of carnivores, the list of carnivorous birds will need to be greatly expanded. Many songbirds subsist almost solely on insects (Wood Warblers, Old World Warblers, Flycatchers, Swallows, Parids, Antbirds, Nuthatches, Creepers... the list goes on and on. In fact, I think it's gotta be over half of the songbirds out there consume mostly insects). In addition, many other non-Passerines are also largely insectivorous (Woodpeckers, Swifts, etc.) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:58, 5 March 2012 (UTC)

Prehistoric carnivores[edit]

Need carnivore dinosaurs. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:23, 14 August 2012 (UTC)

What do you call?[edit]

Under the section “Classification”, it says, “The diet of a hypercarnivore consists of more than 70% meat, that of a mesocarnivore 50-70%, and that of a hypocarnivore less than 30%....” What do you call something that eats 30-50% meat?--Solomonfromfinland (talk) 09:56, 16 May 2013 (UTC)

Of Pandas and Bears[edit]

"...most species of bears are actually omnivorous, except for the giant panda, which is..." not a bear. This makes a pretty poor example. Huw Powell (talk) 02:05, 21 June 2015 (UTC)

"strict" carnivore vs "obligate" carnivore?[edit]

Today I read that "ferrets are strict carnivores, not obligate carnivores".

What is the difference, if any, between "strict" carnivore" and "obligate" carnivore?

I couldn't seem to find this in the article or outside Wikipedia.

Thank you for your time!! :) Zeniff (talk) 07:22, 15 February 2016 (UTC)