Latest Cretaceous TMM 42489-2 Quetz? or Tupux?

Along with the giant Quetzalcoatlus northropi and the smaller Quetzalcoatlus sp., another different sort of rostrum was discovered in the Latest Cretaceous southern Texas strata (Fig. 1, Wellnhofer 1991). The pre-antorbital fenestra rostrum was relatively smaller and the dentary keel was deeper than in Q sp.. We looked at those Q. sp. rostra earlier. A few early artists used this specimen in their reconstructions of Quetzalcoatlus northropi.

Figure 1. TMM  42489-2, the tall crested Latest Cretaceous large rostrum and mandible. It's a close match to that of Tupuxuara, otherwise known only from Early Cretaceous South American strata.

Figure 1. TMM 42489-2, the tall crested Latest Cretaceous large rostrum and mandible. It’s a close match to that of Tupuxuara (above, ghosted), otherwise known only from Early Cretaceous South American strata.

It turns out the rostrum is close match to that of Tupuxuara (Fig. 1), an Early Cretaceous taxon from South America not related to Quetzalcoatlus. This late-surviving taxon testifies to one of the longest-lived genera. Most pterosaurs appear in one strata location only.

This is not the first time this specimen has been associated with tupuxuarids. I agree with those who consider it one.

References
Wellnhofer, P. 1991. The illustrated encyclopedia of pterosaurs. New York: Crescent.

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