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Abstract:

The unique morphology of pterosaurs makes them a compelling group to study, but the lack of ready analogues or descendant clades presents problems when inferring their biology and ecology. In this paper, the extant phylogenetic bracket is used to reconstruct the musculature of the pterosaur Vectidraco daisymorrisae and a detailed comparison is made between the musculature of this taxon and other reconstructions in the literature. M. iliofibularis is reconstructed as originating upon the angular process of the posterior iliac process, putting it into a mechanically advantageous position as an abductor. M. flexor tibialis internus is reconstructed as greatly enlarged over the ancestral state, probably in response to the reduction of M. caudofemoralis brevis and the tail. This enlargement is considered to correspond to the increasing role of M. flexor tibialis internus as a hip retractor.

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