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Exhibition Highlights

Tupandactylus with play button 132.99

Article, Video

About the Exhibition

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.

How Were Pterosaurs Adapted for Flight?

Color a Pterosaur!

Scientists aren't certain what colors pterosaurs were, but researchers make inferences based on living animals with similar ways of life. Here's your chance to color a pterosaur using your own imagination.

Preondactylus with play button 132 by 99

Article, Video

How Did Pterosaurs Fly?

Many animals can glide through the air, but pterosaurs, birds, and bats are the only vertebrates that evolved for powered flight.

Mark A. Norell

Staff Profile, Video

Meet the Curators

Dr. Mark Norell, curator and chair of the Museum's Paleontology Division, oversaw this exhibition with Dr. Alexander Kellner of Museu Nacional in Rio de Janiero.

Dimorphodon with play button 132.99

Article, Video

What Is a Pterosaur?

Neither birds nor bats, pterosaurs were reptiles, close cousins of dinosaurs who evolved on a separate branch of the reptile family tree.

Scaphognathus with play button 132.99

Article, Video

Why Are Pterosaur Fossils Rare?

Few pterosaurs lived close to the places where fossils tend to form. Their fragile bones preserved poorly, so pterosaur fossils are frequently incomplete.

Get the App

Get an in-depth look at these fascinating flying reptiles in this free app for iPad. Download it here.

Pterosaurs iPad Screenshot

The Museum gratefully acknowledges the

Richard and Karen LeFrak Exhibition and Education Fund. 

Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs

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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