According to the nonfiction book "Live Pterosaurs in America," many eyewitnesses have reported pterosaurs, 80% of the creatures being
long-tailed like Rhamphorhynchoids.
This idea is not just from the length of the tails: some eyewitnesses describe something at the
end of the tail: a structure that suggest the
Rhamphorhynchoid pterosaur known from fossils.
For example, the book mentions a report
of something that flew over a road just north of California State University at Irvine. It was "30 feet long, with 15-16 feet of that
being a tail . . . the tail was straight, as if it was 'stretched out to be measured.' . . . A flange, close to the end of the tail,
he described as 'triangle-shaped.'"
But pterosaur-like flying animals are not restricted to California; they are also reported in
Washington State, Kansas, Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, New York, Georgia, South Carolina, Florida, Texas, and
The author of the book, Jonathan Whitcomb, says that he has found three seperate evidences that hoaxes have not been
involved in the reports that he has received over several years.
"The fruit bat of the southwest Pacific islands--the Flying Fox, the largest bat in
the world--has almost no tail and no pterosaur head crest (and no bioluminescence)" (unlike the pterosaur-like ropen)