From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Temporal range: Middle JurassicLate Cretaceous, 165–66 Ma
Pteranodon sternbergi pair.jpg
Replica of Geosternbergia sternbergi skeletons, female (left) and male (right)
Tropeognathus mesembrinus MN 01.jpg
Skeletal reconstruction of Tropeognathus mesembrinus in the National Museum of Brazil
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Order: Pterosauria
Clade: Pterodactyliformes
Clade: Caelidracones
Unwin, 2003

The Caelidracones is a group of pterosaurs.[2]

The clade Caelidracones was defined in 2003 by David Unwin as the group consisting of the last common ancestor of Anurognathus ammoni and Quetzalcoatlus northropi, and all its descendants.[3]

The name Caelidracones means "sky dragons" from Latin caelum, "heaven", and draco, "dragon" and is a reference to Harry Govier Seeley's 1901 book, Dragons of the Air.


In Unwin's original classification, the Caelidracones were considered the sister group of the Dimorphodontidae within the Macronychoptera and consist of the Anurognathidae and the Lonchognatha.[3] More recent studies of pterosaur relationships have found anurognathids and pterodactyloids to be sister groups, which would limit Caelidracones to just those two clades.[1]

Below is a cladogram showing the results of a phylogenetic analysis presented by Longrich, Martill, and Andres, 2018. This study found the two traditional groupings of ctenochasmatoids and kin as an early branching group, with all other pterodactyloids grouped into the Eupterodactyloidea.[4]


AnurognathidaeAnurognathusDB white background.jpg




GermanodactylidaeAltmuehlopterus DB.jpg


PterodactylusPterodactylus BMMS7 life.png

CtenochasmatoideaPterodaustro BW.jpg






OrnithocheiromorphaLiaoningopterusDB flipped.jpg

PteranodontiaPteranodon longiceps mmartyniuk wiki.png





  1. ^ a b Andres, B.; Myers, T. S. (2013). "Lone Star Pterosaurs". Earth and Environmental Science Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. 103 (3–4): 383–398. doi:10.1017/S1755691013000303. S2CID 84617119.
  2. ^ "†unranked clade Caelidracones Unwin 2003 (pterosaur)". Paleobiology Database. Fossilworks. Retrieved 27 April 2016.
  3. ^ a b Unwin, D. M. (2003). "On the phylogeny and evolutionary history of pterosaurs". Geological Society, London, Special Publications. 217 (1): 139–190. doi:10.1144/GSL.SP.2003.217.01.11. S2CID 86710955.
  4. ^ Longrich, N.R., Martill, D.M., and Andres, B. (2018). Late Maastrichtian pterosaurs from North Africa and mass extinction of Pterosauria at the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary. PLoS Biology, 16(3): e2001663. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.2001663