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[dinosaur] Wukongopterid pterosaur premaxillary crest variation (free pdf)




Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com

A new paper in open access:

XIN CHENG, SHUNXING JIANG, XIAOLIN WANG and ALEXANDER W.A. KELLNER (2017)
Premaxillary crest variation within the Wukongopteridae (Reptilia, Pterosauria) and comments on cranial structures in pterosaurs.
Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências (advance online publication)
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/0001-3765201720160742.
http://www.scielo.br/pdf/aabc/2017nahead/0001-3765-aabc-201720160742.pdf



Cranial crests show considerable variation within the Pterosauria, a group of flying reptiles that developed powered flight. This includes the Wukongopteridae, a clade of non-pterodactyloids, where the presence or absence of such head structures, allied with variation in the pelvic canal, have been regarded as evidence for sexual dimorphism. Here we discuss the cranial crest variation within wukongopterids and briefly report on a new specimen (IVPP V 17957). We also show that there is no significant variation in the anatomy of the pelvis of crested and crestless specimens. We further revisit the discussion regarding the function of cranial structures in pterosaurs and argue that they cannot be dismissed a priori as a valuable tool for species recognition.