Difference Between Pteranodon And Pterodactyl 

Both Pteranodon and Pterodactyl are two kinds of Pterosaur. The flying reptiles are considered Pterosaurs. This species existed millions of years back in the Mesozoic era. That stands to be approximately 66 million years ago.

The wings of these reptiles were composed of the membrane of skin and some other tissues. They were not dinosaurs but were often termed flying dinosaurs. Most of the Pterosaurs ate fish and had different lifestyles.

Let us read about the species in detail.

Difference between pteranodon and pterodactyl


This species included winged reptiles with teeth. It is known to be the first species of Pterosaurs and named flying reptiles. They were carnivorous and ate several vertebrates and invertebrates. The pterodactyl was found in Bavaria, Germany. Some of the recovered fossils date back to the late Jurassic period, approximately 150 million years ago.

The fossil evidence describes that this species was a comparatively smaller pterosaur. The wingspan was 1.04 m and they had long skulls. They walked when they were on land and flew in the sky.

Based on the shape size and structure of the teeth it is said that they were carnivores who were dependent on small animals.


Pteranodon is also a species of Pterosaur. However, they were winged reptiles with no teeth. They were found during the late Cretaceous geological period.

Based on the fossil evidence this genus can be divided into two classes:

  • The smaller size class: they had round head crests and represented adult females
  • The larger size class: they represented males having large breasts and narrow hips

Pteranodon had cranial crests projected upwards and backward from their respective skulls. Based on several factors such as age, species, or sex, the shape and the size of the crest varied. The wingspan was approximately 7 m. They heavily relied on fish.

Similarities between Pteranodon and Pterodactyl

Both the Pteranodon and Pteranodon had quite a few similarities. Both:

  • Lived in the Mesozoic era
  • Had skull crest
  • Were winged reptiles
  • Were two genera of Pterosaur
  • Had feathers

Moving on to the key differences now.

Head-to-Head Comparison Table for Pteranodon Vs Pterodactyl

We have tabulated the following points to summarise the differences. Please take a look: With this, we are concluding the article.

Pterodactyl Pteranodon
A genus with winged reptiles and teeth. A genus with winged reptiles and no teeth.
Found in the Mesozoic era. Found in the late Mesozoic era.
Small in size. Large in size.
Found in Germany. Found in America.
Both males and females had the same size. Females were smaller than males.
They were carnivores and depended on small animals. They were carnivores but depended on crabs, insects, fish, etc.
The skull crust was made up of soft tissues. The skull crest was made up of skull bones.
They were discovered much earlier. They were discovered later.


We hope the information provided in the article helps you clarify the topic and the difference between the two.

Happy Learning!

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