Tag Archives: tail

Tapejara: caudal vertebrae

None of the Tapejara specimens I used as sources had a tail, so I used as a source Anhanguera piscator, which seems to be the most closely related pterosaur with well preserved caudal vertebrae. The source is Kellner & Tomida 2000, but I used photos of the tail I had made for Tupuxuara and scaled it to Tapejara proportions.

I made ten individual caudal vertebrae. This number is speculative, as is the shape of the last caudal vertebra. Anhanguera’s tail has dorsally projecting processes on the first four or five vertebrae, which change to lower anterodorsally projecting ones which get smaller and smaller as you get closer to the end of the tail.

Here are some photos. Yes, I made all the vertebrae hollow except for the last one. I thinned the foam a bit with fire.

2013-08-21 20.07.54

These are the final vertebrae.

2013-08-22 00.31.17

1 Comment

Filed under Pterosaur #7: Tapejara

Tapejara: pelvic girdle

I already had made the pelvic bones, but the sternum complex was missing. I didn’t find any realiable source with a perfect sternum, so I used as a source the same azhdarchoid sternum that I used in Tupuxuara, and adjusted it so it would fit the Tapejara pelvis (from SMNK PAL 1137). They are 5 sacral vertebrae, and two dorsal ones with lateral processes fused to the preacetabular processes of the ilium.

I cut it out in one piece from a sheet of 2mm foam, and added the stacked vertebral bodies sculpted out of thicker (yellow) foam. Here are two views of the sacrum after treating with fire.

sacrum 2 sacrum 1

Four views of the finished sacrum.

lateral ventral posterior anterior

Next step: assemble the pectoral girdle. I now have all the parts.


I wish I had smaller pins.

testing dorsal dorsal w pelvis testing lateral anterior with pelvis posterior with pelvis

I placed a rubber tube through the vertebrae acting as a spinal cord. It will be used to attach the pelvic girdle to the dorsal spine and to attach the tail on the other side.

ventral w pelvis

I now can test all the connections. Here is the Tapejara dressed in its pelvic girdle.pelvis and sacrum

A dorsal view.

dorsal assembly

And a ventral one. It’s almost finished. I’m already prototyping the pre-pubis and gastralia, but before I assemble the rest I will cover what I have so far with epoxi resin (I can’t use pins anymore).

ventral assembly lateral assembly

1 Comment

Filed under Pterosaur #7: Tapejara

Tupuxuara: the tail

There are not many preserved pterosaur tails. I had initially planned to make Tupuxuara’s tail from Pteranodon until a friend told me to look for the tail of Anhanguera piscator. So again my source is Anhanguera (Kellner & Tomida, 2000). I estimated its size, ┬áprinted a guide and made eleven caudal vertebrae.

2013-04-16 20.10.36

These are the finished vertebrae.

2013-04-16 20.51.40

To assemble the tail I used a plastic “spinal chord” (made from a plastic hanger) inserted in the tube that I used as the chord inside the pelvis. For now I just fit the vertebrae there. Later I will also attach them together with silicone rubber discs.

2013-04-16 21.02.16

And here is the tail in place. It probably has more than 11 vertebrae. Pteranodon’s tail has two very long vertebrae at the ent, but since this is not even Tupuxuara’s own tail, I decided to leave it as is.

2013-04-16 21.20.27


Filed under Pterosaur #5: Tupuxuara

The tail

I made each tail vertebra and then passed a fishing line through them. I made the tips out of the same material I made the teeth. I then connected them all with silicone rubber, and this is the result.

Leave a comment

Filed under Pterosaur #1: Guidraco