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What is the Largest Flying Animal that Ever Lived?

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The largest flying animals that ever lived were members of the Azhadrichidae family of pterosaurs, flying reptiles that lived around the same time as the dinosaurs, though they were not actually dinosaurs. The name "Azhadrichidae" comes from the word Ajdarxo, a dragon in Uzbek mythology. Two members of this family that contend for the title of largest flying animal ever are Quetzalcoatlus, whose fossils have been found in North America, and Hatzegopteryx, found in Transylvania. Both these animals had a wingspan of 12 m (40 ft) or more, about the size of a school bus. By comparison, the largest flying animal today, the Wandering Albatross, has a wingspan up to 3.7 m (12 ft). Both these pterosaurs lived in the late Cretaceous, between about 85 and 65 million years ago, until they went extinct with the dinosaurs at the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction. During the Mesozoic era, pterosaurs had a niche similar to the birds of today, dominating the skies. They had little competition there, as ... more
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The largest flying animals that ever lived were members of the Azhadrichidae family of pterosaurs, flying reptiles that lived around the same time as the dinosaurs, though they were not actually dinosaurs. The name "Azhadrichidae" comes from the word Ajdarxo, a dragon in Uzbek mythology. Two members of this family that contend for the title of largest flying animal ever are Quetzalcoatlus, whose fossils have been found in North America, and Hatzegopteryx, found in Transylvania. Both these animals had a wingspan of 12 m (40 ft) or more, about the size of a school bus. By comparison, the largest flying animal today, the Wandering Albatross, has a wingspan up to 3.7 m (12 ft). more
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