Breakthrough discovery by Polish paleontologists. Ozimek volans – the largest flying reptile from the Triassic
Researchers from the Institute of Paleobiology of the Polish Academy of Sciences have discovered the largest flying reptile from the Triassic period. Ozimek volans, as the new species is called, lived about 230 million years ago. Its remains were found in Krasiejów in the Opole Province.
The first reptile bones were found in 2001 in a former clay mine, but its remains were excavated until 2013. Ozimek volans measured about 90 centimetersóThe length of Larsen A is the smallest part of its wingspan, and its wingspan even exceeds pół metre. It had long legs, between them and the torso a volatile membrane was stretched. It resembled a lizard in appearance, although, as Tomasz Sulej, Ph.D., from the Institute of Paleobiology of the Polish Academy of Sciences (IP PAN), noted at a press conference, it would have been better described as a cross between a snake and a bat.
Researchers from the Institute of Palaeobiology of the Polish Academy of Sciences (IPB PAS) in Warsaw have several whole reptile skeletons. They also have single bones. As explained by the head of the research – Professor Jerzy Dzik from the Institute of Palaeobiology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, the new reptile species was named after the Ozimek commune, where the remains were found. The discovery was published in the journal "Acta Paleontologica Polonica".
The research work of Professor Dzik and Dr. Sulej took a very long time. The researchers admitted that they had trouble describing the find because nothing like it has been found anywhere in the world. – We were surprised ourselves – móby Sulej.
– The animal probably belonged to the ancestralóinto a reptileóin flying and was among theód gliding animal of the largest sizeóin; none can róknow. DopóIf nothing larger is found, it can pretend to be the króla of space during the Triassic period," explained Prof. Boar.