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Re: Sky Monsters (w/spoilers)



The shape of the tip of the snout is very different from storks and herons -- and very unlike at least one of the azhdarchids in Sky Monsters.

That doesn't really surprise me. I don't think I've seen any pterosaur jaws that look all that much like heron bills, actually.


Most importantly, rapid-striking in the heron or stork style requires a fairly flexible neck. They have lots of short cervicals that anchor a large number of short muscles in the neck. Such a setup is, in fact, quite the opposite of the azhdarchid arrangement (where you get a few short cervicals likely anchoring small numbers of long muscles).

And just to correct myself (sent the original too quickly), I meant a few LONG cervicals are present in azhdarchids (contrasting to the numerous short ones in herons). Oops. Proofreading is my friend.


The hard stops in the quetz cerivicals don't allow a striking type of motion. Their mobility is quite limited.

Glancing at reconstructions and photographs gave me that impression, but I didn't want to jump to conclusions. Again, not surprising...if an animal were selected for striking, then it should have numerous short cervicals, not the extended cervicals as seen in azhdarchids.


Now, not all storks use rapid striking, but those that don't are largely ground-feeding scavengers.

That has been proposed for quetz. Again, the tip of the snout doesn't appear to me to be designed for that.

I also have not had the impression that quetz. was built to loiter in the same way as most vultures and scavenger storks, though I suppose that conclusion depends on a few assumptions regarding wing design.


--Mike