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Giant bipedal pterosaur tracks found in Korea?

  • #1
    Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 5,279 mod Adam Khor


    Awesome if true:

    "Enigmatic tracks and dinosaur trackways from lacustrine margin
    sediments of the Lower Cretaceous Haman Formation of the southern
    coast of Korea represent a new ichnospecies. Trackways with large,
    pes-only tracks with lengths up to 39 cm, characterized by elongate,
    subtriangular outlines, impressions of four digits and a subangular
    heel, are attributed to plantigrade pterodactyloids and assigned to
    Haenamichnus gainensis ichnosp. nov. These tracks comprise one of the
    largest and longest pterosaur trackways hitherto reported and provide
    intriguing new insight into pterosaur locomotory gait and stance,
    which has been the subject of a 200-year-long controversy."

    If the feet were 39 cms long it must have been a huge ptero :O

    http://www.arirang.co.kr/News/News_View.asp?nseq=130523&code=Ne6&category=7

    Media,113878,en.jpg


Comments



  • I wonder does the footsize suggest that it was an azhdarchid. They did have much larger/longer feet in relation to their tibias than any other family of pterosaurs.




  • It must have looked like it was wearing skis. But perhaps the ground where it evolved was soft or boggy or something and it needed large feet for it's size??




  • Rubecula wrote: »
    It must have looked like it was wearing skis. But perhaps the ground where it evolved was soft or boggy or something and it needed large feet for it's size??

    Well, I guess we don´t know if the feet were "large for its size"... it may have been a HUGE pterosaur with normally proportioned feet...

    I do wonder, tho- seeing as they were plantigrades, is it possible that they were perhaps facultative bipeds to begin with? I mean, the vast majority of pterosaur tracks are from quadrupeds, but then again, bears can rear up and even walk some steps in bipedal posture. Apes too. I think one would have to be very lucky to find fossil tracks of a bear or non hominin ape walking on two feet, so what if it was the same with pterosaurs, or at least some of them?
    What would this pterosaur be doing? Walking on unstable ground like you say? Searching its surroundings for prey or predators? Carrying something? Or did it walk on two feet all the time?
    Makes the imagination fly :pac:




  • Carrying or trying to catch something you mean? Possible I suppose, I really wouldn't know. My own thoughts are it was possibly trying to take off. Would account for long stride length and only rear footprints.




  • Rubecula wrote: »
    Carrying or trying to catch something you mean? Possible I suppose, I really wouldn't know. My own thoughts are it was possibly trying to take off. Would account for long stride length and only rear footprints.

    If that was the case, it would change everything (or at least some things XD) about the way we imagine pterosaurs taking off. I don´t know about you, and I may be a little slow, who knows, but I still have trouble understanding how the whole pole-vault method championed by so many paleontologists today works. Especially for those pterosaurs with very long wings...
    1561626.jpg?390


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  • I read about that 'pole-vault' idea in National Geographic magazine. The pterosaurs would have needed very muscular arms to pull it off, which is kind of contradictory to the idea that their arms/wins were super light to remain airborne.




  • Well I may be dumb as a post but I still can´t figure out how the pole vault thing would work. How would the pterosaur be able to flap its huge wings to take off being so close to the ground?

    I know vampire bats take off from a quadrupedal stance, but I've failed to find any slow mo videos of them doing it. I did find this rather haunting sequence of a "running" vampire bat tho... and I guess I can see the moment when it becomes completely airborne by the push of its forewings- maybe that's how pterosaurs did it...





  • Despiste it's flaws, Clash of the Dinosaurs does show exactly how quadrupedal take off would work.

    Also, flight =/= lack of weight. Large soarers actually do need to be heavy


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