Majungasaurinae (named after the city of Mahajanga in Madagascar) is a subfamily of large carnivorous theropods from the Upper Cretaceous, found in Madagascar, India, and France. They are a subgroup of the Abelisauridae family, a Gondwanan clade known for their thick and often horned skulls and vestigial arms. The two subfamilies of Abelisauridae are Carnotaurinae, best known from the South American Carnotaurus, and Majungasaurinae, consisting of Madagascar’s Majungasaurus and its closest relatives. Their ancestors emerged in the Middle Jurassic, and the clade lasted until the Upper Cretaceous.
The majungasaurines were mid-sized, bipedal predators, but relatively slow moving. Their long legs were built for striding, not running. They had tall, deep heads with powerful jaws, but small forearms without carpels in the wrists. Because of their slow gait and small arms, they likely preyed upon the larger, slower sauropods rather than the smaller, faster ornithopods. Their ancestors lived on a unified southern continent, Gondwana, in the Early Cretaceous, but as the land mass divided they became distinct from their South American cousins, and eventually from each other.