Funcional morphology of pterosaurs

Functional morphology of pterosaurs

In spite of being a long known and thoroughly investigated group, flying reptiles or pterosaurs are still enigmatic creatures of the Mesozoic tetrapod faunas with ambiguous origin and relations as well as a lot of uncertainties surrounding their lifestyle or flight abilities. How did they control their sometimes enormous wings? Were some of them too heavy to get aloft? Could some have become flightless? Morphology of the skeleton along with bone histology helps us reconstructing soft tissues like muscles and ligaments and physiological features such as metabolic and/or growth rate all of which may provide us with further insight into the secrets of the life of pterosaurs.

Figure 1. Reconstruction of the articulation of bones and their mobility range in the wings of pterosaurs
Figure 1. Reconstruction of the articulation of bones and their mobility range in the wings of pterosaurs
Figure 2. Figure presenting the hypothesis of automated flexion and extension mechanism of the pterosaur wing
Figure 2. Figure presenting the hypothesis of automated flexion and extension mechanism of the pterosaur wing
Figure 3. Rhamphorhynchus specimen (flying reptile) housed in the Hungarian Natural History Museum (MTM V 2008.33.1)
Figure 3. Rhamphorhynchus specimen (flying reptile) housed in the Hungarian Natural History Museum (MTM V 2008.33.1)

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