|Mesozoic Mosaic pg#1|
Illustration of Nyctosaurus KJ2 flying - by Beri (digital), Copyright © 2004 BERI
- a pterosaur with a large crest
Christopher Bennett from University of Bridgeport Bridgeport, CT, recently described a couple of new exciting fossil specimens of pterosaurs:
Bennett S. C. 2003. New crested specimens of the Late Cretaceous pterosaur Nyctosaurus. - Palaeontologische Zeitschrift, 77 (1): 61-75, 6 figs., 1 tab.; Stuttgart.
Nyctosaurus turned out to have
an extremely large cranial crest nearly three times the
length of the skull and bifurcating into an upward
extending and a shorter backward extending ramus. Whether
these supported a sail-like membrane is at the moment a
pure speculation. As Chris notes: "I discussed the
question of a membrane between the two rami of the crest
in the paper and concluded that there was no evidence of
any membrane between the rami and good reason to think
that there was not one. Despite that, for some reason
that I cannot understand everyone else seems to think
that there was a membrane between the rami."
Evidence is based on 2 specimens in a private collection.
No species name is applied and the specimens are refereed
to as KJ1&KJ2.
Publishers interested in the above illustration (high resolution image for publishing purposes), please, contact Beri.