facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Fossil discovery is new flying reptile

Sept. 4, 2012 at 4:38 PM   |   Comments

BAMBERGH, Germany, Sept. 4 (UPI) -- German researchers say a fossil of a new species of pterosaur, the flying reptiles that lived at the same time as the dinosaurs, is 155 million years old.

That makes the exquisitely preserved skeleton, discovered in the Bamberg region of Germany, one of the oldest pterosaurs known, officials at the Bamberg Natural History Museum said.

Paleontologists say the creature was well adapted to wading in water, with exceptionally long arms and legs, and possessed jaws shaped like the beak of a stork or flamingo.

That would have been useful for filtering small organisms from the water, including small fish, the remains of which are persevered in the fossil's stomach.

"It's an extremely rare and wonderful specimen," pterosaur expert Eberhard Frey from the Karlsruhe natural history museum said.

The pterosaur had a wingspan of around 4 feet, Matthias Mauser, director of the Bamberg museum of natural history, told The Local.de.

"It did have wings, but that does not mean it was a bird," Mauser said, noting it did not have feathers but instead was covered in stiff bristles.

The pterosaur went on display at the Bamberg museum Saturday.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
45,000-year-old man reveals earliest human genome 45,000-year-old man reveals earliest human genome
2
Coal-rich Poland wants concessions in EU climate deal Coal-rich Poland wants concessions in EU climate deal
3
Chimps caught on film raiding corn farm, having sex Chimps caught on film raiding corn farm, having sex
4
Dude! Company floats fly hoverboard Dude! Company floats fly hoverboard
5
Protestors object plans to build telescope on land sacred to native Hawaiians Protestors object plans to build telescope on land sacred to native Hawaiians
Trending News
Around the Web
x
Feedback