Large shadows fell on Cretaceous landscape

11:26am, October 10, 2001

Paleontologists digging at a quarry in eastern Spain have unearthed remains of

what they believe could be the largest flying animal yet discovered. The

researchers estimate that the adult wingspan of the ancient reptile ranged from 5

meters to as much as 12 m–larger than that of an F-16 fighter aircraft.

David M. Unwin, a vertebrate paleontologist at Humboldt University in Berlin, says

he and his colleagues have exhumed as many as 40 bones or bone fragments of what

appears to be a new species of giant pterosaur. Most of the well-preserved

fragments were pieces of vertebrae and neck bones from adult animals.

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