Our Pteranodon soars outside the museum entrance, hoping you'll visit.

NAME: Pteranodon

Meaning: Toothless wing

Pronounced: TER-an-O-don

By: Othniel C Marsh in 1876

DIET: Fish, perhaps small land animals


Wingspan: Males to 18 ft (5.6 m); females to 12 ft (3.8 m)

Weight: Weight is unknown, estimates have ranged widely

WHEN IT LIVED: Late Cretaceous, 86 – 84.5 million years ago

WHERE IT LIVED: North America, mostly central North America around the Western Interior Seaway. Fossils have been found in Kansas, Alabama, Nebraska, Wyoming, and South Dakota

Late Cretaceous North America, showig the Western Interior Seaway.


Kingdom Animalia (animals)

  Phylum Chordata (having a hollow nerve chord ending in a brain)

    Order Pterosauria (flying reptiles)

      Suborder Pterodactyloidea (hand-wings)

         Family Pteranodontidae

           Subfamily Pteranodontinae

             Genus Pteranodon

                   Species: One or two species.

Pteranodon longiceps Marsh 1876

Pteranodon sterbergi Harksen 1966 is not recognized by all paleontologists


Pteranodons may have been covered with fur. This would have acted to smooth the profile of the animal in flight, like feathers smooth the body of birds.

The skull of the original Pteranodon described by O.C. Marsh in 1876, in the Yale Peobody Museum


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