London: Male pterodactyls, a class of flying reptiles which lived alongside dinosaurs between 220 and 65 million years ago, used their giant head crests to woo the opposite sex, a rare fossil find has revealed.
Scientists who have unearthed a 160-million-year-old fossil, dubbed "Mrs T", believe that while female pterodactyls had no decorative markings on their heads, the males sported impressive plumes of feathers, five times the size of their skull, which they used to show off to prospective mates.
It had previously proved impossible to say whether the remains of the reptiles, also called pterosaurs, were male or female, and "sexing" them has foxed experts for more than 100 years.
The evidence comes from Mrs T, the nickname given to a female reptile preserved together with the egg she was about to lay....more
06:44 PM, Jan 21, 2011