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  • Pterosaurs_crests

    Pterosaur Crests

    This gallery illustrates the incredible variety of pterosaur crests.

  • Pterosaurs_fly

    Fly Like a Pterosaur

    Visitors can “pilot” a flying pterosaur in a whole-body interactive exhibit that uses motion-sensing technology.

  • Pterosaurs_cast
  • Pterosaurs_Entry

    Soaring Pterosaur

    The colossal Tropeognathus mesembrinus (wingspan 25 feet) soars overhead at the exhibition entrance.

  • Pterosaurs_trackways


    Fossil tracks help reveal how pterosaurs moved on land: not like birds but like bats, walking on all four limbs.

  • Pterosaurs_wings
  • Pterosaurs_flight_video
  • Pterosaurs_ipads

    Pterosaurs App

    Discover different pterosaur species in the companion app, which features animations, scientist interviews and more.

  • Pterosaurs_magnet

    Create Your Own

    At this magnet wall, visitors can combine pterosaur features to create their own creature.

  • Pterosaurs_diorama
  • Pterosaurs_virtual_wind

    Virtual Wind Tunnel

    Experiment with the principles of aerodynamics in this interactive that responds to hand movements.

  • Pterosaurs_fossils

    Preserved in Sediment

    See pterosaurs preserved as fossils in sediment, and learn about the fossilization process.

Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs

They flew with their fingers. They walked on their wings. Some were gigantic, while others could fit in the palm of a hand. Millions of years ago, the skies were ruled by pterosaurs, the first animals with backbones to fly under their own power. 

Pterosaurs are neither birds nor bats, but flying reptiles that lived from about 220 and 66 million years ago. Though close cousins of dinosaurs, they evolved on a separate branch of a reptile family tree.

Incredible new fossil discoveries are revealing surprising clues about the diversity of pterosaurs, their unique wing-finger anatomy, and their capabilities for flight and locomotion.

See life-size models of pterosaurs overhead, and inspect rare fossils and casts. Explore the science of flight through digital and physical interactive games. Video interviews with leading pterosaur scientists and experts reveal how and what they’ve learned about these creatures. A rich diorama of a prehistoric Brazilian inland sea brings a pterosaur habitat to life, and invites visitors to discover how pterosaurs lived, fed, and ultimately became fossils. 

Exhibition Information

Venue Gallery Size:

6,000 – 8,000 ft2


Venue Ceiling Height:

12 ft recommended


Conservation & Security Requirements:






Standard Rental Length:

16 weeks


Exhibition Brochure

pterosaurs ed tout

Educator's Guide

American Museum of Natural History

Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY 10024-5192
Phone: 212-769-5100

Open daily from 10 am - 5:45 pm
except on Thanksgiving and Christmas
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