First pterosaur remains from the Cretaceous of Poland

Marcin Machalski, David M. Martill


The first records of pterosaurs from the Cretaceous of Poland are reported, on the basis of fragmentary remains from the marine Upper Albian (Lower Cretaceous) of the Annopol Anticline, central Poland. The new material consists of four bone fragments, tentatively interpreted as: 1) a portion of wing phalanx; 2) a medial element of fused skull bones (parietal crest?); 3) a fragmentary carpal or tarsal; and 4) a distal phalanx of the pes (or a very small fragment of a long cervical vertebra). Previously, only the remains of marine vertebrates have been reported from the Cretaceous of the Annopol area. The pterosaur fossils studied most probably belonged to individuals that died while over the sea. The possibility that they represent remains dropped from floating carcasses, introduced into the marine environment by rivers, is regarded as less probable, as there are no remains of dinosaurs or other terrestrial fauna in the Annopol deposits.

Full Text: