Neogale - Wikipedia

Long tailed weasel on Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge (35240138322).jpg
Long-tailed weasel (N. frenata)
American mink (16142491595).jpg
American mink (N. vison)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Mustelidae
Subfamily: Mustelinae
Genus: Neogale
Gray, 1865
Type species
Mustela frenata[1]

N. africana
N. felipei
N. frenata
N. vison
N. macrodon

  • Mustela (in part)
  • Neovison Baryshnikov & Abramov, 1997
  • Grammogale
  • Cabreragale

Neogale is a genus of mustelid native to the Americas, ranging from Alaska south to Bolivia. Members of this genus are known as New World weasels.


Members in this genus were formerly classified into the genera Mustela and Neovison, but many studies had previously recovered several American species of Mustela, as well as both species within Neovison, to comprise a monophyletic clade distinct from all other members of Mustelinae.[2][3] A 2021 study found this clade to have diverged from Mustela during the Late Miocene, between 11.8 - 13.4 million years ago, with all members within the clade being more closely related to one another than to any of the other species in Mustela, and gave it the name Neogale, originally coined by John Edward Gray.[1] The American Society of Mammalogists later accepted this change.[4]

New World weasels



Neogale africana

Neogale felipei

Neogale frenata

Neogale vison

Neogale macrodon

Taxonomy of Neogale[5]


There are 5 recent species in the genus, 4 extant and 1 extinct:[4]

Extant species[edit]

Image Scientific name Common name Distribution
Neogale africana.png Neogale africana (Desmarest, 1800) Amazon weasel Amazon Basin of South America
Neogale felipei (Izor and de la Torre, 1978) Colombian weasel Andes of Colombia and Ecuador
Bridled weasel.jpg Neogale frenata (Lichtenstein, 1831) Long-tailed weasel Continental North America south of southern Canada; Andes and northern Amazon Basin in South America
American Mink, Centre Island, Toronto, ON (9371348505).jpg Neogale vison (Schreber, 1777) American mink North America (United States and Canada); introduced to Europe, Japan, Chile and Argentina

Extinct species[edit]

Image Scientific name Common name Distribution
Neovison macrodon.png Neogale macrodon (Prentiss, 1903) Sea mink Maritime Provinces in Canada, New England in the United States; now extinct


  1. ^ a b Patterson, Bruce D.; Ramírez-Chaves, Héctor E.; Vilela, Júlio F.; Soares, André E. R.; Grewe, Felix (2021). "On the nomenclature of the American clade of weasels (Carnivora: Mustelidae)". Journal of Animal Diversity. 3 (2): 1–8. doi:10.52547/JAD.2021.3.2.1. ISSN 2676-685X. S2CID 236299740.
  2. ^ Koepfli, Klaus-Peter; Deere, K.A.; Slater, G.J.; Begg, C.; Begg, K.; Grassman, L.; Lucherini, M.; Veron, G.; Wayne, R.K. (February 2008). "Multigene phylogeny of the Mustelidae: Resolving relationships, tempo and biogeographic history of a mammalian adaptive radiation". BMC Biology. 6: 10. doi:10.1186/1741-7007-6-10. PMC 2276185. PMID 18275614.
  3. ^ Law, C. J.; Slater, G. J.; Mehta, R. S. (2018-01-01). "Lineage Diversity and Size Disparity in Musteloidea: Testing Patterns of Adaptive Radiation Using Molecular and Fossil-Based Methods". Systematic Biology. 67 (1): 127–144. doi:10.1093/sysbio/syx047. PMID 28472434.
  4. ^ a b "Explore the Database". Retrieved 2021-07-01.
  5. ^ Nyakatura, K.; Bininda-Emonds, O. R. P. (2012). "Updating the evolutionary history of Carnivora (Mammalia): a new species-level supertree complete with divergence time estimates". BMC Biology. 10 (#12): 12. doi:10.1186/1741-7007-10-12. PMC 3307490. PMID 22369503.