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Pterodactylus

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Pterodactylus was a pterosaur, a little, flying reptile, with a wingspan of about 50–75 cm (20–30 inches) that lived on Lake Coast during the Late Jurassic Period. It was a carnivore and most likely preyed upon fish and other small animals.

Like all pterosaurs, Pterodactylus's wing prolonged from its last finger to its torso. It was supported internally by collagen fibres and outwardly by keratinous ridges.

It was unconscientiously built, with hollow bones, a long, curved neck, a long skull (with no peak), a long, pointed beak, many small teeth, a little body, and a very short tail. It had a comparatively large brain and good eyesight. The skull was about 2.4 inches (6 cm) lengthy.

Pterodactyloid wings were covered by a fibrous membrane. This skinny but tough membrane stretched between its body, the top of its legs and its elongated fourth fingers, forming the constitution of the wing. Claws protruded from the other fingers. Pterodactylus could flutter its wings and fly with power. Pterodactylus would fly very lengthy distances.

Pterodactyloids were reptiles, but not like dinosaurs. By definition, all dinosaurs were diapsid reptiles with an upright posture. Pterosaurs possibly had a semi-upright stance. There is a little minority of paleontologists who think that the pterosaurs' stance could have been upright and that pterosaurs should therefore be included in the dinosaur collection (being derived theropods). Either method, dinosaurs and pterosaurs are certainly intimately related.

Fossils have been established in Tanzania, England, France, and Germany.

The name derives from the Greek language ptero (meaning 'winged') and dactyl (meaning 'finger') and refers to the method in which the wing is supported by one big finger. The genus was initially named Ptero-dactyle by Georges Cuvier in 1809.

Scientific Classification:

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Sauropsida

Order: Pterosauria

Suborder: Pterodactyloidea

Family: Pterodactylidae

Genus: Pterodactylus