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Caulkicephalus trimicrodon fossils were discovered in the brown layer of the Wessex Formation of the Wealden Group. The bone fragment fossils found in the Yaverland locality, near Sandown were undescribed between 1995-2003. Lorna Steel, David Martill, John Winch, and David Unwin described the fossils found in the Wessex Formation to a new genus. The Caulkicephalus trimicrodon belongs to the genus of Anhanguerid pterosaur. This pterosaur inhabited the present-day area of the Isle of Wight, England during the Early Cretaceous period (Barremian stage) almost 130 million years ago.
The genus name Caulk was derived from the traditional nickname for the Isle of Wight residents, Caulkhead, while the Greek word 'kephale' means 'head'. The specific name 'trimicrodon' means 'three small teeth'. This name was kept on the basis of the pterosaur's dental pair formation.
This pterodactyloid was assigned to the genus of Ornithocheiridae due to its narrow snout with the concave crest. The crest on the snout was seen as a unique feature and researchers used it as a reference to put it under Ornithocheiridae. The partial crest however was a reference to synapomorphy, which Euornithocheira had in common with this specimen. The species had unique characteristics like its autapomorphy, dental pairs missing, and present, the median ridge of the roof of the mouth at the ninth pair. The only intact fossils found were the skull of the head, rostrum, and partial tooth. Even for teeth, only the first to the third pair were present and again fifth to ninth pairs.
Scroll down to read about the Caulkicephalus trimicrodon's life, what they fed on, their habits, and other exciting details! If you want to discover more like the Caulkicephalus, take a look at the Ludodactylus and Pterodactyl.
The Caulkicephalus classification was not of a dinosaur. It belongs to the genus of Pterosaur which are flying reptiles. It belongs to the superfamily Ornithocheiridae.
The genus name Caulkicephalus is pronounced as 'cawl-kih-sef-ah-luss'.
The Caulkicephalus trimicrodon was a piscivore and belongs to the genus of Anhanguerid pterosaur and to the superfamily Ornithocheiridae. The dinosaur inhabited the present-day area of the Isle of Wight, England during the Early Cretaceous period (Barremian stage) almost 130 million years ago. Lorna Steel, David Martill, John Winch, and David Unwin described the fossils found in the Wessex Formation to a new genus. The genus name Caulk was derived from the traditional nickname for the Isle of Wight residents, Caulkhead, while the Greek word 'kephale' means 'head'.
The Caulkicephalus trimicrodon lived during the Early Cretaceous period almost 130 million years ago in the present-day area of the Isle of Wight, England.
Dinosaurs, in general, went extinct almost 65 million years ago at the end of the Cretaceous period, after living on Earth for about 165 million years. This species existed in the Early Cretaceous period (Barremian stage) almost 130 million years ago.
Most Pterosauria inhabited areas that had coastal bodies as they fed on fish and other aquatic animals. They might have also inhabited areas of forests or vegetation in order to live in nests.
The fossils of this pterosaur species were discovered in the brown layer of the Wessex Formation of the Wealden Group. The bone fragments were found in the Yaverland locality near Sandown, England. Due to the different land structures now, the pterosaur might have inhabited areas that are presently known to be the Isle of Wight, England.
There is no information as of now on whether these Early Cretaceous birds stayed in pairs or they stayed alone. But it is assumed that small pterosaurs like this tended to stay in flocks in order to protect themselves from predators and also to hunt easily.
There is no information on the lifespan or the age of these species and only after the excavation of more specimen materials relevant to this are found can this be speculated or proved.
Pterosaurs, like other reptiles, mated with each other during the breeding season and in the case of this breed, the female dinosaur laid eggs. The eggs hatched after a certain period of time and the newborn birds came out. Adult dinosaurs took care of the newborns until they could move with their parents or go along with their new family.
The Caulkicephalus trimicrodon inhabited the present-day area of the Isle of Wight and the fossils were found in the brown layer of the Wessex Formation. This pterosaur inhabited the present-day area of the Isle of Wight, England during the Early Cretaceous period (Barremian stage) almost 130 million years ago.
The fossils found of this Cretaceous period pterosaur were a nearly complete rostrum, partial fragments of the posterior of the skull, left posterior portion of the skull bone, a small portion of the jugal bone, fragments of the first finger of the wing, four almost complete wing fingers, a small portion of the second finger and the fourth finger of the wing bone, and mostly a fragment of the hind limb bone.
The rostrum of this Pterodactyloid at the front of the head was quite long and on the top of the head, a small concave crest was present which didn't reach the tip of the rostrum. The teeth pairs were mostly missing except a pair of the replacement teeth. The replacement teeth were upright and the teeth were engraved into the jaw. The Pterosauria had replacement teeth that were round and slightly protruding from the jaw. The rostrum had the first two tooth pairs were pointed towards the front, while the ones at the back were pointed more sideways The teeth were of the same size until the third pair. The third pair was the largest. The fourth pair of teeth was equal in size with the first pairs, while the fifth, sixth and seventh pair were the smallest in comparison to the third pair. Most of the teeth were missing in the fossil remains found in the Isle of Wight.
The smaller teeth were in the front of the snout while the broader end had wider teeth, which helped them to catch fish and other aquatic animals mid-flight. The fragments of the posterior end of the skull had a braincase that was quite damaged. The crest on the top of the skull was pointing towards the back. The crest on the top of the skull was separate from the snout tip. It had a wingspan of about 188 in (4.8 m), which means that it could fly at a great speed.
The skeleton of the Caulkicephalus is still incomplete and therefore this Cretaceous period pterosaur that inhabited the present-day area of the Isle of Wight, England during the Early Cretaceous age is still being researched. The only remains that were found were fragments of the posterior of the skull, left posterior portion of the skull bone, a portion of the jugal bone, fragments of the first finger of the wing, four almost complete wing fingers, a portion of the second finger and the fourth finger of the wing bone, and mostly a fragment of the hind limb bone. Only after proper excavation can the number of bones be determined.
There is no specific mention of how they communicated as it is quite difficult to find, but they definitely didn't have modern means of communication. Like any other animal, pterosaurs also communicated by making sounds and using their body language. They might have included hoots and hollers to communicate as well.
This Pterosauria was about 188 in (4.8 m) in length and 196 in (5 m) in height. This makes it almost two times bigger than the Quetzalcoatlus which was 393-433 in (10-11 m) in length and 120 in (3 m) in height.
This Pterodactyloidea had one of the largest wingspans that helped it to fly at great speed. They mostly lived in areas with coastal bodies and could catch prey in mid-flight with their long snout.
This Pterosauria weighed almost 550 lb (250 kg), which makes it six times heavier than the Tupuxuara which weighed 50.2 lb (22.8 kg).
There is no specific name for the male or female dinosaurs of this species and are commonly known as Caulkicephalus trimicrodon or Caulkhead. The search for the rest of the fossils is still going on and only after the complete discovery of the significant fossils can the classification be done.
A newborn dinosaur was known as hatchling or nestling. This classification was common for most dinosaur species. There is no specific information on the names of newborns for this dinosaur bird as of now.
The Caulkicephalus diet consisted of fish and other smaller aquatic animals. This pterosaur was a piscivore and used its small teeth at the tip of the snout while wider teeth at the broader end of the snout to catch fish mid flight.
Based on research, dinosaurs are divided into two groups. Sauropods were herbivores and did not attack each other or other dinosaurs while theropods were meat-eaters and attacked each other and other dinosaurs as well. This Early Cretaceous Pterodactyloidea was quite aggressive but didn't attack other dinosaurs for their safety.
The Caulkicephalus was assigned to the sub-family Anhanguerinae and is the sister taxon to the Guidraco and Ludodactylus. All of them belong to the reptile kingdom and are mostly Pterodactyloidea. This classification was done on the basis of the pterosaur's features.
The wingspan of the Caulkicephalus was about 188 in (4.8 m) in length. It was not the largest Ornithocheridae Cretaceous pterodactyloid.
The Caulkicephalus had one of the largest wingspans amongst the Pterodactyloid group and they could fly quite high. They couldn't fly as high as the Arambourgiania which had a wingspan of 275-511 in (7–13 m).
Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly prehistoric animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other creatures from our Sauropelta fun facts, or Yinlong facts for kids pages.
You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Caulkicephalus coloring pages.
Main image by Nobu Tamura
Second image by Eotyrannu5
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