Lü, Meng, Wang, Liu, Shen & Zhang, 2017
Illustration: Z. Chuang. DOI: 10.1144/SP455.16
A new anurognathid pterosaur, Vesperopterylus lamadongensis gen. et sp. nov., is erected based on a complete skeleton with a skull preserved. It is characterized by two short distinct ridges present on the ventral surface of the cervical vertebrae; coracoids slightly longer than scapula; humerus, wing phalanx 3 and tibia nearly the same in length; grooves clearly present on the posterior surface of the wing phalanges 1–3; and the first toe reversed. It is the first anurognathid pterosaur from China with a definitively short tail, and the first pterosaur with a reversed first toe. The reversed first toe of Vesperopterylus indicates that it had arboreal habitats. The discovery of Vesperopterylus lamadongensis from the Jiufotang Formation strongly expands the geological age range for anurognathid pterosaurs.
Pterosauria Kaup, 1834
Anurognathidae Kuhn 1937
Vesperopterylus lamadongensis gen. et sp. nov.
Etymology. Vesper-, Latin word for ‘dusk’ implying that the new pterosaur may seek food at dusk; -pteryl, Latin word for ‘wing’. The specific name is referred to the fossil locality, lamadong of Jianchang County, Liaoning Province.
Type specimen. An almost complete skeleton with skull and jaws (BMNHC-PH-001311). The specimen is now stored in the Beijing Museum of Natural History.
Locality and horizon. Lamadong goumen, Jianchang County, Liaoning Province; Jiufotang Formation.
|Fig. 5. The living scene of Versperopterylus lamadongensis|
(Illustration: Zhao Chuang).
Vesperopterylus is the first anurognathid pterosaur from China preserved with a clearly reduced tail, and it is also the youngest anurognathid pterosaur in geological age. The reversed first toe of Vesperopterylus may indicate that it, perhaps, has a gripping adaptation.
Junchang Lü, Qingjin Meng, Baopeng Wang, Di Liu, Caizhi Shen and Yuguang Zhang. 2017. Short Note On A New Anurognathid Pterosaur with Evidence of Perching Behaviour from Jianchang of Liaoning Province, China. in D. W. E. Hone, M. P. Witton and D. M. Martill (eds) New Perspectives on Pterosaur Palaeobiology. Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 455. DOI: 10.1144/SP455.16