1910, from Modern Latin Mustelidae, taken as a genus name by Linnaeus (1758), from Latin mustela "weasel," possibly related to mus "mouse" (see mouse (n.)). Tucker tentatively suggests *mus-ters-la "mouse harrier" and Klein notes that the weasel was identified in antiquity as "the catcher of mice."
Any of various small to midsize carnivorous mammals of the family Mustelidae, usually having long, slender bodies, short legs, and well-developed anal scent glands. The pelts of many mustelids have been important for use in clothing. Weasels, skunks, badgers, wolverines, ferrets, mink, martens, and otters are mustelids.