These stuffed animals are Pterodactyls. The Pterodactyls at right are named Swoop; they are both a Beanie Buddy and a Beanie Baby, made by Ty Inc. Pterodactyl or a Pterodactyloid means winged fingers. The flying dinos at left are Pteranodons. Check the Jeannie's Cottage Gift Shop to see if we have any of these in stock.
The Pterodactyls (or Pterodactyloids) were a group of flying reptiles that ranged in size from having a wingspan of a few inches (primitive Pterodactyls) to over 40 feet (later Pterodactyls). They were lightly built with hollow bones, long, curved necks, long skulls, and small bodies. They had large brains and good eyesight. Some had short tails, some had no tails. Some had lightweight, bony head-crests, some did not. The crest may have acted as a rudder when flying or may have been a sexual characteristic. Some pterodactyloids had fur on their bodies. Pterodactyloids were carnivores; some had bristle-like teeth, some had no teeth. They ate fish (which they caught at the surface of the oceans), mollusks, crabs, perhaps plankton (for some species), insects, and scavenged dead animals on land. Pterodactyloid wings were covered by a leathery membrane. This thin but tough membrane stretched between its body, the top of its legs and its elongated fourth fingers, forming the structure of the wing. Claws protruded from the other fingers. Pterodactyloids could flap their wings and fly with power, but the largest ones (like Quetzalcoatlus) probably relied on updrafts (rising warm air) and breezes to help in flying. This theory is probably from our own large winged birds that also need rising warm air currents to help them fly. Some pterodactyloids include: Pterodactylus, a small pterodactyloid with a wingspan of about 20-30 inches. Pterodactylus was named by Cuvier in 1809. Dsungaripterus, a pterodactyloid with 10-foot-wide leathery wings, had an unusual bony crest running along its snout. It had long, narrow, curved jaws with a pointed tip. Pteranodon, a 6-foot-long pterodactyloid, had a 25 foot wingspan. Quetzalcoatlus was a huge pterodactyloid with a wingspan of 40 feet. It only weighed about 110 pounds . Pterodactyloids were reptiles, but not considered dinosaurs because they did not have an upright stance. Pterosaurs probably had a semi-upright stance. Nevertheless, dinosaurs and pterosaurs are closely related. Pterodactyloids fossils have been found in North America, Europe, Africa, and Australia.