Hatzegopteryx thambema, a giant pterosaur

Hatzegopteryx thambema was a pterodactyloid pterosaur that belonged to the clade Azhdarchidae. With an estimated wingspan of about 10 to 12 m (33 to 40 feet) and the body weight of 180–250 kg (400–550 lbs), it was one of the largest flying vertebrates in the history of life.

H. thambema was first described in 2002 by a team of researchers led by Eric Buffetaut. It lived 66 million years ago, at the very end of the Late Cretaceous, in what is now Transylvania, Romania.

Comparing to its relatives, Hatzegopteryx was a short-necked pterosaur and likely a dominant predator in its ecosystem.

Featured image by Mark Witton. CC BY 4.0.

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