Evidence for the presence of Rhamphorhynchus (Pterosauria: Rhamphorhynchinae) in the Kimmeridge Clay of the UK

Michael O'sullivan, David M. Martill

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    Abstract

    The second pterosaur genus to be established, Rhamphorhynchus von Meyer, 1847, has historically been used as a wastebasket material. Several species have been erected for fossils found in Europe and Africa, the majority of which are based on non-diagnostic material. Following Bennett's (1996) review of its taxonomy, Rhamphorhynchus is generally regarded as a monospecific taxon restricted to the Late Kimmeridgian and Tithonian of Southern Germany. Here we describe a disarticulated but complete right pterosaur wing, MJML K-1597 from the Kimmeridge Clay Formation of England. Based on a combination of morphology and statistical analysis, MJML K-1597 can safely be referred to Rhamphorhynchus, making it the first diagnostic Rhamphorhynchus specimen from outside of Germany. Furthermore, based on the unique length ratio between wing phalanx 1 and wing phalanx 2, MJML K-1597 can be referred to a new species of Rhamphorhynchus.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)390-401
    Number of pages12
    JournalProceedings of the Geologists' Association
    Volume126
    Issue number3
    Early online date4 May 2015
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015

    Keywords

    • Pterosauria
    • Rhamphorhynchidae
    • Rhamphorhynchus
    • Jurassic
    • Kimmeradge Clay Formation
    • England

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