Pterosaur Takeoff Tussle Highlights Science News Fumble
Earlier this week I received a press release about pterosaur takeoffs from Texas Tech University. Rather than launching into the air through a pole-vault motion, as paleontologists such as Michael Habib and Mark Witton have argued (check out the video), the email said that giant pterosaurs such as Quetzalcoatlus required a “10-degree downhill slope” where they could “taxi” by running and flapping before taking off. Only under such restricted conditions could an animal with a 34 foot wingspan get into the air, the release claimed.
I didn’t pay much attention to the news suggestion. There were no details about the actual science, presented at the annual Geological Society of America meeting in Charlotte, North Carolina, and