Soaring styles of extinct giant birds and pterosaurs

  title={Soaring styles of extinct giant birds and pterosaurs},
  author={Yusuke Goto and Ken Yoda and Henri Weimerskirch and Katsufumi Sato},
The largest extinct volant birds (Pelagornis sandersi and Argentavis magnificens) and pterosaurs (Pteranodon and Quetzalcoatlus) are thought to have used wind-dependent soaring flight, similar to modern large birds. There are two types of soaring: thermal soaring, used by condors and frigatebirds, which involves the use of updrafts over the land or the sea to ascend and then glide horizontally; and dynamic soaring, used by albatrosses, which involves the use of wind speed differences with… 


Soaring and non-soaring bats of the family pteropodidae (flying foxes, Pteropus spp.): wing morphology and flight performance.
The results show that there are tendencies towards longer wings and lower wing loadings in relation to body size in the gliding/soaring flying foxes than in the non-soaring ones, and diurnality in the soaring species seems to be the ultimate determinant of soaring behaviour.
Thermal Soaring Compared in Three Dissimilar Tropical Bird Species, Fregata Magnificens, Pelecanus Occidentals and Coragyps Atratus
1.All three species were observed in straight flight, and circling in thermals, from Flamenco Island, Panama. Measurements were made by ornithodolite, an instrument which records a series of timed,
Flight performance of the largest volant bird
  • D. Ksepka
  • Environmental Science, Biology
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
  • 2014
Modeled flight properties indicate that lift:drag ratios and glide ratios for P. sandersi were near the upper limit observed in extant birds and suggest that pelagornithids were highly efficient gliders, exploiting a long-range soaring ecology.
A Reappraisal of Azhdarchid Pterosaur Functional Morphology and Paleoecology
It is argued that azhdarchids were stork- or ground hornbill-like generalists, foraging in diverse environments for small animals and carrion, and were well suited for wading and terrestrial foraging.
Azhdarchid Pterosaurs: Water-Trawling Pelican Mimics or “Terrestrial Stalkers”?
It is concluded that terrestrial foraging remains the most parsimonious habit for azhdarchid pterosaurs.
Flight in slow motion: aerodynamics of the pterosaur wing
  • C. Palmer
  • Environmental Science
    Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2010
Wind tunnel tests on a range of possible pterosaur wing sections have substantially higher profile drag and maximum lift coefficients than those assumed before, suggesting that large pterosaurs were aerodynamically less efficient and could fly more slowly than previously estimated.
Earliest fossils of giant-sized bony-toothed birds (Aves: Pelagornithidae) from the Eocene of Seymour Island, Antarctica
A new dentary fragment of a pelagornithid bird from the middle Eocene Submeseta Formation on Seymour Island, Antarctica represents a species with a body size on par with the largest known species in the clade, demonstrating the early evolution of giant body size in theclade.
Scaling of Soaring Seabirds and Implications for Flight Abilities of Giant Pterosaurs
Albatross-like animals larger than the limit will not be able to flap fast enough to stay aloft under unfavourable wind conditions, and casts doubt on the flying ability of large, extinct pterosaurs.
The extinct family Teratornithidae contains the world's largest known flying birds. A new method of determining body weights of extinct birds, based on the size of their tibiotarsi, facilitates the