JOHN CONWAY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN CONWAY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Pterosaurs (Nyctosaurus sp.), artwork. Pterosaurs, also known as pterodactyls, are an extinct group of flying reptiles that were the first vertebrates to evolve powered flight. Nyctosaurus lived during the Late Cretaceous, 90 million years ago. Nyctosaurus means 'night lizard'. Unlike most other pterosaur species, it's wing does not possess clawed 'fingers'. It had a wingspan of up to 3 metres and is thought to have lived by the sea, feeding on a diet of fish. Pterosaurs were efficient flyers due to their small bodies, hollow bones and large wingspans. They were capable of flying by flapping their wings as well as gliding and soaring. Fossilised trackways also suggest that pterosaurs could walk on all four limbs.
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