Sinopterus

Name: Sinopterus ‭(‬Chinese wing‭)‬.
Phonetic: Sih-nop-teh-rus.
Named By: Wang‭ & ‬Zhou‭ ‬-‭ ‬2003.
Synonyms: Huaxiapterus jii.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Reptilia,‭ ‬Pterosauria,‭ ‬Pterodactyloidea,‭ ‬Azhdarchoidea,‭ ‬Tapejaridae,‭ ‬Tapejarinae.
Species: S.‭ ‬dongi‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭ ‬S.‭ ‬jii.
Type: Frugivore/Omnivore.
Size: 1.2‭ ‬meter wingspan.
Known locations: China,‭ ‬Liaoning Province‭ ‬-‭ ‬Jiufotang Formation.
Time period: Aptian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Remains of‭ ‬3‭ ‬individuals,‭ ‬composed of almost complete remains.

       Aside from being the first tapejarid pterosaur discovered outside of Brazil,‭ ‬Sinopterus also represents one of the earliest and‭ ‬most complete.‭ ‬Sinopterus had a toothless bony beak and bony crest that runs from the premaxilla to the middle of the skull.‭ ‬The crest is then thought to extend upwards.‭ ‬Sinopterus is thought to have been an omnivore,‭ ‬with fruit perhaps forming an important part of its diet.
       Another species,‭ ‬Sinopterus gui,‭ ‬is now thought to represent a younger individual of S.‭ ‬dongi.‭ ‬Some also consider that the smallest currently known pterosaur Nemicolopterus which also comes from the same Jiufotang Formation,‭ ‬may also represent a juvenile Sinopterus.‭ ‬As always,‭ ‬more fossils and study will be required for both of these pterosaurs.

Further reading
- A new pterosaur (Pterodactyloidea, Tapejaridae) from the Early Cretaceous Jiufotang Formation of western Liaoning, China and its implications for biostratigraphy. - Chinese Science Bulletin 48:16-23. - X. Wang & Z. Zhou - 2003.
- A new Lower Cretaceous sinopterid pterosaur from the Western Liaoning, China. Acta Palaeontologica Sinica 42(3):442-447. - J. Li, J. Lü & B. Zhang - 2003.
- New information on Tupandactylus imperator, with comments on the relationships of Tapejaridae (Pterosauria). - Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. - F. L. Pinheiro, D. C. Fortier, C. L. Schultz, J. A. F. G. De Andrade & R. A. M. Bantim - 2011.

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