Estimating body weight from footprints: Application to pterosaurs

  • Kubo T
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Abstract

The body mass of extinct animals have never been estimated from footprints, despite its potential utility. To redeem this situation, the relationship between body mass and the areas of footprints was derived from 17 species of modern tetrapods. Body mass of seven ichnospecies of pterosaur tracks were estimated, because pterosaur body weight is an intriguing topic with reference to their flying ability. Estimated body weights of pterosaurs range from 110. g to 145. kg. The result provides evidence that large pterosaurs are about 10 times heavier than the heaviest modern bird. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Body weight
  • Footprints
  • Pterosaurs

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Authors

  • Tai Kubo

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