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Cretornis Fric,1881, azhdarchid pterosaur from the Upper Cretaceous of Czech Republic



Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com


A new paper:

Alexander Averianov &  Boris Ekrt (2015)
Cretornis hlavaci Fric, 1881 from the Upper Cretaceous of Czech
Republic (Pterosauria, Azhdarchoidea).
Cretaceous Research 55: 164-175
doi:10.1016/j.cretres.2015.02.011
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0195667115000270



Cretornis hlavaci Fric, 1881 from the Upper Cretaceous (Turonian) of
Czech Republic is a valid taxon referred to Azhdarchoidea based on
having a saddle-shaped humeral head, pneumatic foramen on proximal
humerus present on anterior side and absent on posterior side,
elongate deltopectoral crest with subparallel proximal and distal
margins, pneumatic foramen absent on distal side of humerus,
metacarpals I–III not articulated with carpus and displaced on
anterodorsal side of wing metacarpal, and wing metacarpal much longer
than humerus. Absence of a pneumatic foramen on posterior side of
proximal humerus suggests attribution of Cretornis hlavaci to
Neoazhdarchia. It has a unique construction of the distal ulna with a
dorsal articulation surface placed distinctly proximal to the
tuberculum shared only with the non-azhdarchid azhdarchoid
Montanazhdarcho minor from the Campanian of North America. Cretornis
hlavaci differs from the latter taxon by the structure of its humerus
and distinctly longer wing metacarpal. It is more derived than
“Tapejaridae” but shares with Azhdarchidae the deltopectoral crest of
the humerus displaced distally from humeral head. Cretornis cannot be
assigned to Azhdarchidae because of the oval cross section of the
second wing phalanx. A unique rhombic outline of the distal humerus of
Cretornis hlavaci is a possible autapomorphy for this taxon. Its wing
span estimated as 1.5–1.6 m. This is the first taxon of non-azhdarchid
pterosaurs known from the Upper Cretaceous of the Eastern Hemisphere.