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PTEROSAUR SPEC CHALLENGE by HUBLERDON PTEROSAUR SPEC CHALLENGE by HUBLERDON
For :iconpaleosir:'s #speculativepterosaur challenge:


(Note I do not do digital work for Spec challenge projects. It takes up too much data on my illustration app.)

KRONORYNCHUS MACKLINI ("Macklin's Time-Jaw") is an early-Jurassic pterosaur from modern-day Tibet. It is a Helidrakoforme, a derived Eudimorphodont atomnatically closest to Campygliognathoids such as Caviramus. The families are believed to share a common ancestor. 

Heliodrakoformes are characterized by their short necks, keratinous impressions of disc or diamond-shaped crests on the upper nasal bone, rectangular compact skulls similar to early theropods and a shortened tail vertebrae with a diamond-shaped "rudder," believed to help maintain stability in flight. They were active predators as opposed to piscivores or scavengers, with compact skulls, derived-crocodile like teeth and a powerful biteforce comparable to that of a dog.

Heliodrakoformes were the largest Pterosaurs of their time, usually clocking in at 30 lb. with an 11-12 foot wingspan, roughly the size of a modern-day pelican. Adults being rather front-heavy animals, they were not believed to have been frequent flyers, capable of flying only short distances without high thermals and spending most of their time as terrestrial runners. They hunted small sauropodomorphs, basal coelurosaurs and some crocodylimorphs.

Heliodrakoformes are known from Kronorynchus in Tibet as well as Heliodrakos polemopteryx from Iran and Qu kosemenii from Turkey. Fragmentary remains have been found in western Indochina, as well. The clade is believed to evolved as a result of the geological separation the countries experienced at the time, being offshore subcontinents to Laurasia during the Early Jurassic. Like the Haast Eagle of New Zealand, it is believed the Pterosaurs took advantage of the lack of rivals to become the specialized apex predators. They have been described by many as "Pterosaurs trying to become theropods."

The Indochina specimens show highly atrophied wingbones, implying the clade might've been on their way to becoming fully terrestrial predators. Sadly, the Heliodrakoforme clade was not to last, the oceans seperating the subcontinent by the mid Jurassic having disappeared and the predatory Pterosaurs likely being hunted out by invading Allosaurs and Megalosaurs. Had the creature's been given a couple more million years to solidify their return to the ground, pterosaur evolution might have taken a drastically different turn.
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:iconthederpasaur:
TheDerpasaur Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
That is awesome!
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:iconhublerdon:
HUBLERDON Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks!
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:iconthederpasaur:
TheDerpasaur Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
np
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:iconpaleosir:
paleosir Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
That's a really nice idea.
I really love those mostly terrestrial pterosaurs, and you did a good job creating a very distinct, yet believable one.

Good backstory too, I can definitely see that happening.
Reply
:iconhublerdon:
HUBLERDON Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
You're welcome!

See a reference anywhere in there?
Reply
:iconpaleosir:
paleosir Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Eh, nope.
Reply
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Submitted on
July 20
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Jul 19, 2017, 8:55:39 PM
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