Museum Frankfurt

Rhamphorhynchus
Rhamphorynchus
Rhamphorhynchus gemmingi


Suborder: Rhamphorhynchoidae
Family: Rhamphorhynchidae
   
Diet: fish
Wingspan: approx. 1 metre
Age: 150 million years (Upper Jurassic)
   
Fossil site: Solnhofen (Bavaria)
at Senckenberg: three originals as well as a cast of a wing-imprint

Rhamphorhynchus
is the most famous representative of the long-tailed Pterosaurs. Representatives of this suborder had a skin sail at the end of their long tails, to control steering. It had long, narrow jaws with sharp, forward-projecting teeth. They were especially well suited to catch fish. The slippery prey were directly impaled with the long teeth and could not escape. Some specimens still have fish scales and fish bones of half-digested prey in their stomachs.
Next to the complete original skeleton of Rhamphorhynchus in the exhibition, can be seen the cast of a wing with imprinted wing membrane. With other discoveries from the fine Bavarian layered limestone, even details of the wing construction (network of blood vessels, fibrous supporting tissue), the tail, and the throat pouch (skin impressions) can be seen. On his head, Rhamphorhynchus – like many other flying dinosaurs – wore a narrow keel of fibrous tissue.
 

next is Scaphognathus

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