Monday, July 30, 2012

[Paleontology • 2005] Bakonydraco galaczi • First evidence of azhdarchid pterosaurs from the Late Cretaceous of Hungary

New remains of an azhdarchid pterosaur were discovered from the Upper Cretaceous (Santonian) Csehbánya Formation at the Iharkút vertebrate locality in the Bakony Mountains, western Hungary. Among the isolated bones, consisting principally of 21 symphyseal jaw fragments, four cervical vertebrae, a right radius, and some fragmentary limb bones, is a complete articulated mandible that represents one of the best−preserved mandibular material of any presently known azhdarchid pterosaur. The complete edentulous jaw, referred to Bakonydraco galaczi gen. et sp. nov. posesses several features diagnostic for azhdarchids which prove that Bakonydraco belongs to this group. The cervical vertebrae exhibit azhdarchid features and consequently are referred to as Azhdarchidae indet. The discovery of these fossils helps to understand the construction of the azhdarchid mandible and provides new insight for studying the feeding style of the
edentulous azhdarchid pterosaurs.
Key words: Pterosauria, Azhdarchidae, mandible, cervical vertebrae, Cretaceous, Hungary.

Pterosauria Kaup, 1834
Pterodactyloidea Plieninger, 1901
Azhdarchoidea Unwin, 1992
Azhdarchidae Nessov, 1984 (emend. Padian 1986)

Genus Bakonydraco nov.
Type species: Bakonydraco galaczi described below.

Etymology: The generic name derives from name of the Bakony Mountains where the locality is situated and from the Latin draco = dragon.

Bakonydraco galaczi sp. nov.
Holotype: MTM Gyn/3, nearly complete mandible (Fig. 2).

Etymology: In honour of professor and adviser András Galácz who helped us in the Iharkút Research Program.

Type locality: Iharkút, Veszprém County, Bakony Mountains, Transdanubian Range, western Hungary.
Type horizon: Csehbánya Formation, Upper Cretaceous (Santonian; Knauer and Siegl−Farkas 1992).
Paratypes: MTM Gyn/4, 21 symphyseal fragments of the dentary.

Ösi, Attila; Weishampel, David B.; and Jianu, Coralia M. 2005. First evidence of azhdarchid pterosaurs from the Late Cretaceous of Hungary. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. 50 (4): 777–787.