Of course we’re talking about modern live pterosaurs, not fossils of winged creatures that lived millions of years ago. But what were the biggest pterosaurs that have been seen by eyewitnesses? Several sightings could be mentioned, in Austraila, Papua New Guinea, and North America.
The two eyewitnesses thought the wingspan was 30-50 feet.
[The 1997 Perth Creature] “. . . Within a minute or so it had reached our position and was about 250 or 300 feet above us and slightly inland . . . I saw that it seemed to be a light reddish-tan color . . . [It seemed to have] a leathery texture. Soon after it passed us it flew over a more brightly lit sports area which highlighted even more the leathery appearance also bringing more detail to view. The wings were the most definite leathery feature, they were shaped in a triangular arch, similar to a very elongated shark fin, The body also still appeared leathery, though textured as though possibly covered with fine hair or small scales . . .
Giant Ropen Pterosaur of Papua New Guinea
Many eyewitnesses have seen the long-tailed ropen of Papua New Guinea, although most of them are natives. This nocturnal flying creature is only occasionally observed by Western visitors, for it flies at night, often in remote tropical rain forests.
But in 1944, during World War II, the American Duane Hodgkinson and his army buddy were shocked to see one of the giant ropens fly into the air right after it was startled awake from a wild pig in a jungle clearing. Hodgkinson estimated the wingspan as similar to that of a Piper Tri-Pacer airplane, in other words about 29 feet. He estimated the tail length at about 10-15 feet, at least.
Two eyewitnesses saw the giant pterodactyl in Socorro, New Mexico.
“Me and a close friend, who now has a masters in biology, were hiking during the midday . . . a large flying animal. It had a 20-30 foot wingspan and was about the same length long. It had a long tail with [a] seeming spike at the end. Its head was very pterodactyl shape with a fluted back pointy head.”
. . . approximately 5:00 A.M. . . . The weird part is I live in Philly. [My friend] was dropping me off . . . about six blocks away . . . we saw something that made our jaws drop . . . This thing didn’t seem to fly quickly. [Its] wingspan was huge. We’d figured at least 20 feet or so. It wasn’t flapping real hard like a sparrow or pigeon does. It almost seemed to sail.