Tag Archives: pterosaur

Books by a Mormon Author

By Jonathan Whitcomb, nonfiction crypotozoology writer

Rather than begin by listing my four cryptozoology books, let’s look at what you would like as a reader or at the needs and interests of the reader for which you would give a book as a gift. Check out the following headings and choose one that fits your needs.

How do reports of non-extinct “pterodactyls” relate to LDS beliefs?

As of late-summer, 2017, the best nonfiction book to answer this question is the fourth edition of Searching for Ropens and Finding God. It’s also the longest of my cryptozoology books: 360 pages. Notwithstanding the title words “finding God,” this is more about true-life adventure than religion. Yet a few paragraphs of the early chapters occasionally mention religious belief. The following is from the first chapter:

In my childhood, nobody insisted to me that small simple life must have changed into large complex life long ago. I had read of ideas contrary to the General Theory of Evolution by my mid-teens, after our family had moved to Pasadena, California. But I was brought up to believe or disbelieve what I chose. My own feelings, perspective, and belief in God raised my doubts about Darwin.

From page 44 read:

But it was much more. We were promoting awareness of another survival long ago: the good news of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. That in itself deserves countless books, and we need to move on; but be aware, that the driving force behind the ropen expeditions was the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

It was more than competing with Darwin’s philosophy, although mostly that, at least at first. My associates and I believe that the fiery flying serpent of the Old Testament was a “basal” pterosaur, perhaps related to the long-tailed ropen of Papua New Guinea. We believe they called it “fiery” because of its glow, which we attribute to bioluminescence. “Flying” is literal, with wings.


Nonfiction paperback book about eyewitness sightings of living pterosaurs

Searching for Ropens and Finding God – by LDS author Jonathan Whitcomb


What book is a low-cost introduction to living-pterosaur investigations?

I recommend my Live Pterosaurs in Australia and in Papua New Guinea, a free pdf nonfiction cryptozoology book about encounters with these flying creatures in two nations of the southwest Pacific. The first chapter is titled “How can pterosaurs be alive.”

nonfiction cryptozoology book "Live Pterosaurs in Australia and in Papua New Guinea" by Mormon author Jonathan Whitcomb

Free online cryptozoology book


Is there a book especially about pterosaur sightings in the USA?

Look into the third edition of Live Pterosaurs in America. Here’s what a satisfied reader wrote for the Amazon page of this cryptozoology book:

This book is one of the best books that I have ever read! It reminds us to have an open mind and that the things we have all been taught as fact ….may not be fact at all.This is a very interesting and educational book and may change the way you see the world around you.

nonfiction "Live Pterosaurs in America" by LDS author Jonathan Whitcomb

Third edition of Live Pterosaurs in America (by an LDS author)


Does any nonfiction book have tangible evidence of a non-extinct pterosaur?

In other words, does any cryptozoology book have anything more substantial than eyewitness testimony, to support the concept that at least one species of pterosaur is still alive? My recent publication, Modern Pterosaurs, is that book. The American physicist Clifford Paiva and I have jointly studied the old photograph “Ptp” and have declared that it has a genuine image of a real animal. That photo has what appears to be a recently deceased Pteranodon.

Nonfiction "Modern Pterosaurs" by LDS author Jonathan Whitcomb

Modern Pterosaurs (by Mormon nonfiction writer Jonathan Whitcomb)




Mormon nonfiction writer Jonathan Whitcomb

“Not all of my books and online publications are about eyewitness reports of apparent pterosaurs, but most of them are. How do doctrines of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints relate to the existence of modern pterosaurs? Most of our beliefs don’t relate to them directly, yet those that do—they deserve attention. . . .”


The Pteranodon Photo and Religion

An old photograph has been bouncing around the internet for quite some time, with many persons giving it a careless glance but very few indeed examining it closely and with an open mind. In the first few months of 2017, however, that changed.


Cryptozoology book by Whitcomb

Reports of living pterosaurs or apparent pterosaurs come from Papua New Guinea and Africa, with cryptid names that include “ropen,” “indava,” and “kongamato.” But similar descriptions come from eyewitnesses in the U.S.A.


Living Pterosaurs and Skepticism

This is a partial response to some of what has been written by Glen Kuban. I begin by addressing a couple of concerns that Kuban has had about publicity for the Ptp photo . . .


Fiery Flying Serpent

The Fiery Flying Serpent of the Old Testament is also found in the Book of Mormon. In fact, in First Nephi, Chapter 17, verse 41, it is more clearly a flying fiery “serpent” that afflicted the children of Israel at the time of Moses, more clear than at least one of the relevant passages in the Bible, in that “flying” is included.

I Nephi 17:41

And he did straiten them in the wilderness with his rod; for they hardened their hearts, even as ye have; and the Lord straitened them because of their iniquity. He sent fiery flying serpents among them; and after they were bitten he prepared a way that they might be healed; and the labor which they had to perform was to look; and because of the simpleness of the way, or the easiness of it, there were many who perished.

Traditional Interpretation

One traditional way this is interpreted is as follows:

  1. Not literally fiery, but biting with venom that causes burning
  2. Not literally flying but leaping out of trees
  3. Literally a serpent, meaning a snake

Rhamphorhynchoid Pterosaur Interpretation

My associates and I offer an interpretation quite different:

  1. Apparently fiery because of a bioluminescent glow at night
  2. Literally flying, with wings that flap
  3. Not literally a snake, but something with a long tail suggesting a snake

I suggest you consider the new pterosaur interpretation, for major problems fly up from the traditional explanation. For example, what would be the worst symbol for Moses to use, or any other prophet or religious leader to use, as a symbol for Jesus Christ? Would it not be a symbol that was well known as representing Satan? The snake seems like the worst thing that Moses could have used to turn our minds to the Savior.

How would a Rhamphorhynchoid pterosaur image more closely resemble Jesus Christ on the cross? The outstretched wings on the pole used by Moses would have represented the outstretched arms of the Savior. My associates and I, who study in an obscure branch of cryptozoology, offer this interpretation as far more reasonable for what was used by Moses as a symbol for the people of Israel to look up to.

By the way, a long-tailed pterosaur at rest, with wings folded up, could resemble a snake because the long tail would be visible. Flying at night, venomous creatures could easily have caused great problems for people. They would have had had more access to people, for they would also have been able to move at night, after flying into an area from another location. Also, how unreasonable for anybody to name an animal with the word “flying” if it were an non-flying snake! Jumping out of a tree does not resemble flying, especially not according to the original meaning of the Hebrew word, which signifies a back-and-forth motion, like wings flapping.


Could the "Fiery Flying Serpent" of the Old Testament and the Book of Mormon have been a Rhaphorhynchoid pterosaur? It is possible

Fiery Flying Serpent? (sketch of the “Gitmo pterosaur” of Cuba)


This pterosaur-interpretation is not from any policy or doctrine of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but an opinion of one of its members: Jonathan David Whitcomb. This opinion is shared by several other active investigators of modern flying creatures that have been given names like the following in Papua New Guinea:

  • Ropen
  • Indava
  • Seklo-bali
  • Duwas
  • Kundua
  • Kor
  • Wawanar


Book “Searching for Ropens and Finding God”

Many of the paleontologists will say, “A live pterosaur?! A live pterosaur?! We have got pterosaur fossils and there cannot be any more live pterosaurs.”

O fools, they shall have pterosaur fossils; and they shall come from among those animals that died during the ancient Flood written of in Genesis. And what thanks do paleontologists give to God for the preservation of basic animals types on the Ark of Noah, written of in the Bible?