Last modified on June 24, 2016, at 23:12


Pterosaur (extinct)
Scientific classification
Kingdom Information
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Information
Phylum Chordata
Class Information
Class Sauropsida
Order Information
Order Pterosauria
Sub-order Pterodactyloidea; Rhamphorhynchoidea
Population statistics

Pterosaurs (Greek "winged lizards") are a probably extinct order or apobaramin of flying reptiles. Pterosaurs can be divided into two separate clades or baramins: the pterodactyloids -- which were toothless, had short tails, and often grew to great sizes—and the rhamphorhynchoids -- which were typically smaller and had teeth and long tails.[1] Their varied skull morphology likely allowed them to exploit numerous food sources.

Evolutionary View

Evolutionists claim that fossil evidence indicates that that they were buried throughout the Mesozoic Era group of rocks. This is consistent with the evolutionary belief that they were the first vertebrates to achieve powered flight.[2]

Creationary View

Creation scientists applying the Biblical worldview hold that pterosaurs were created on the fifth day of the creation week along with the other winged creatures.[3]

Cryptid accounts

There have been many reports of pterosaurs or pterosaur-like creatures throughout history and in present times.[4]

The pagan historian Herodotus describes Arabian "winged serpents" as being small, varied in color, producing a horrible screech, and having wings very closely resembling those of a bat. They were said to have guarded the Arabian frankincense trees, which made harvesting of that precious aromatic resin very difficult, requiring the use of protective ox hides and smoke to disperse the animals.[5] They were also said to live in the mountains near the city of Buto (where Herodotus saw their remains firsthand) and would every spring fly in great numbers towards Egypt, kept in check only by flocks of ibises which preyed upon them. Arabian tradition held that, if not for ibis predation, the whole world would swarm with these pterosaurs.[6] These "winged serpents" were corroborated by Aristotle[7] and Cicero.[8]

The Jewish historian Flavius Josephus recounts how Moses, while serving as a general in the Egyptian army during the war with the Ethiopians, employed a wonderful stratagem involving baskets of ibises to protected his men from serpents, "some of which ascend out of the ground unseen, and also fly in the air, and so come upon men at unawares, and do them a mischief."[9] Also, according to the Bible, Moses, while later leading his people out of Egypt, had to deal with "fiery serpents", which some have proposed is actually a reference to flying reptiles.[10][11]

In more modern times, according to late-20th Century reports, the people of Papua New Guinea have reported two distinct species of pterosaurs-like creatures: the small Ropen and the large pterodactyl-like Duah; but an early 21st Century investigation suggests that many native names (from villlages with many different languages) may refer to the same species or related species. The creatures are said to bioluminesce, a trait that was undoubtedly original to the pterosaur baramins and would explain the Biblical appellation of "fiery".[12]

Pterosaurs have also been reported in Africa—where they go by the name Kongamato ("Overwhelmer of boats") throughout Central Africa, Sasabonsam in Ghana, and Olitiau in Cameroon and Nigeria—and in the Americas, where Native Americans tell of large bird-like creatures with reptilian characteristics, including the Thunderbird of the Southwest and the Quetzalcoatl of Central America.


  1. The Two Pterosaur Groups: The Rhamphoryncoids and Pterodactyloids, Dr. Ken Hooper, 1998.
  2. Introduction to the Pterosauria. Accessed 13 May 2007.
  3. Feedback: Dinosaurs, Man, and the Bible, Answers in Genesis, May 9, 2008.
  4. The Rhamphorhynchoid Pterosaur: A "Living Fossil" Until the 17th Century, John Goertzen, MS, 1998.
  5. The History of Herodotus, Book III, 107-110.
  6. The History of Herodotus, Book II, 75-76.
  7. History of Animals, Book I, Chapter V
  8. The Nature of the Gods, Book I, Section XXXVI
  9. Antiquities of the Jews, Book II, Chapter X: "How Moses Made War With The Ethiopians"
  10. Deuteronomy 8:15 and Numbers 21:6-9 recount Moses' battles with these pterosaur-like animals. They are also mentioned in Isaiah 14:29 and Isaiah 30:6.
  11. The Bible and Pterosaurs: Archaeological and Linguistic Studies of Jurassic Animals that Lived Recently, John Goertzen, MS, 1998.
  12. "Pterosaur-like Creatures Reported in Papua New Guinea", Free Republic, 20 July 2006.