Could Dinosaurs Fly?


The simple answer is yes and they belonged to a group of reptiles known as the Pterosaurs, which means ‘Flying Lizard’.

They were related to the dinosaurs and lived at the same time around 245 and 65 million years ago.

Here are some examples of the flying reptiles :-

Pteranodon – One of the most commonly known dinosaurs of the Cretaceous period, the pteranodon was an enormous reptile and measured about 1.8metres long with an approximate wing span of up to 10 metres wide, bigger than the average house.  They had a crest on their head that is thought to have acted as a rudder to help it fly.   The pteranodon didn’t have teeth, instead it had sharp claws enabling it to eat insects, fish and other sea creatures.

Quetzalcoatlus – This was the largest creature that flew in the skies.   It had a wing span of around 17 metres, which is the equivalent size f a WWII Spitfire plane!  It had a small body and weighed in about 135g.  Like the pteranodon it didn’t have any teeth, but had excellent eye sight, making it easy for it to hunt for fish and sea food and scavenge  dying animals on land.

Pterodactylus – This small pterosaur would swoop down on it’s prey like a swallow, snapping up insects and fish with it’s long toothed beak.   The pterodactylus lived during the Jurassic period and it’s wingspan was no more than a metre wide.  This flying reptile did not have a crest on his head but did have a furry body.

Dimorphodon – This was one of the first pterosaurs known and lived during the Triassic and early Jurassic periods around 195 million years ago.   It had a large head and beak a bit like the puffin today with a wingspan of 1.2metres.

Rhamphornhynchus – This flying reptile was a meat eater and had a lot of sharp teeth with a long narrow jaw perfect for grabbing hold of fish and small dinosaurs as it swooped down from the skies.   This pterosaur had a wingspan which was about 1.75 metres and lived during the late Jurassic period.

Anurognathus – This very tiny pterosaur’s body was only 9cm  and it’s wings were about 50cm wide.  It would eat insects and had needle sharp teeth in its mouth.

Some of the flying reptiles have similarities to the birds we see flying around in this day and age but thankfully not to the extent of the Quetzalcoatlus!