Friday, 29 November 2013

Thalassodromeus sethi

Thalassodromeus is a pterosaur from the Early Cretaceous of Brazil. It had an extraordinary large skull surmounted by a huge bony crest. The crest was irrigated by blood vessels and might have been used for body temperature regulation. The beak is similar in shape with the one of the modern skimmer (Rhynchops) and it was suggested that Thalassodromeus might have had a similar feeding strategy. However, new biomechanical studies of the neck show that its unlikely that it was a skimmer. The scizzor like jaws indicate it might had been a scavenger, or an aerial piscivore that used the jaws to grasp prey rather than skim.

Thalassodromeus sethi
Kellner & Campos, 2002
Meaning of generic name
Sea runner
Skull length: 1.4 m, Wingspan: 4.5 m
Nearly complete skull.
Age and Distribution
Romualdo Member, Santana Formation (Early Cretaceous, Aptian-Albian) Cear√°, Brazil.
Pterosauria Pterodactyloidea Azhdarchoidea
Further Reading
Kellner A. W. A. and Campos D. A., 2002, The function of the cranial crest and jaws of a unique pterosaur from the early Cretaceous of Brazil. Science. vol. 297, no. 5580 19 July 2002, pp. 389-392.

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