Pretend that you are living during the Cretaceous period. Then look up at the sky. That fierce winged creature swooping down on you is a pterodactyl, a flying reptile.

The word pterodactyl, pronounced "tear-uh-DACK-til," refers to a now-extinct group of winged reptiles known as pterosaurs. The word comes from the Latin Pterodactylus, the creatures' genus name, which originated in the Greek pteron, meaning “wing,” and daktulos, meaning “finger.” Although technically not a dinosaur, this flying reptile thrived during the same time period is as often seen among dinosaurs in movies.

Definitions of pterodactyl
  1. noun
    extinct flying reptile
    see moresee less
    type of:
    flying reptile, pterosaur
    an extinct reptile of the Jurassic and Cretaceous having a bird-like beak and membranous wings supported by the very long fourth digit of each forelimb
Word Family

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