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Fenghuangopterus, new long-legged pterosaur



This just in (maybe I'm late):

And congratulations to:

Lu, J., Fucha, X. and Chen, J. (2010). "A new scaphognathine pterosaur from the 
Middle Jurassic of western Liaoning, China." Acta Geoscientica Sinica, 31(2): 
263-266 with color plates. PDF available online with key word: Fenghuangopterus.

Relatively complete, crushed and the wings are chopped into short segments. 
Surprised that the authors aligned (not cladistically nested yet) this specimen 
with Scaphognathus as all indications make it more primitive, in the 
Dorygnathus clade (not mentioned in the text). The anterior teeth lean 
anteriorly (tops and bottoms), hence they are rake-like. Similar in size to the 
holotype of Scaphognathus, Fenghuangopterus has a much smaller head, a concave 
ventral maxilla and a drooping jaw tip that probably flattened anteriorly. The 
torso is much smaller than in Scaphognathus. The hind limbs are on the long 
side. The tibia alone is as long as the dorsal + sacral series. In most other 
similar pterosaurs the tibia is half the torso length. It would be a stretch to 
go quadrupedal as compared to other pteros. Manual unguals also on the small 
side, smaller than pedal unguals. Interesting variation on a theme.

David Peters
St. Louis