Papua New Guinea

A Remote Tropical Wilderness in the Southwest Pacific

Umboi Island, home of the pterosaur-like nocturnal ropen 

Mount Sual, as seen from the home of Mark Kau, near Gomlongon Village 

Just north of Australia, the islands of Papua New Guinea have some of the most remote and least explored tropical jungles on the planet. Could some of these wildernesses be home to a living pterosaur?

According to the book Searching for Ropens, second edition, the ropen of Umboi Island is a giant Rhamphorhynchoid pterosaur, known by some Americans as a "pterodactyl." (The upcoming third edition of the book will be retitled "Searching for Dragons.")

Old explanations, from critics in the United States, had included the idea that the Flying Fox fruit bat was causing misidentifications. That has now been refuted by consistent eyewitness testimonies. The large fruit bats do not have long tail, nor do they glow with an apparent bioluminescence, nor do they catch fish, nor do they have long head crests, nor do they have wingspans close to thirty feet, nor do they hang rightside up on a tree trunk.

Eyewitnesses have included the Australian psychologist Brian Hennessy, the American World War II veteran Duane Hodgkinson, and the natives Gideon Koro, Wesley Koro, Mesa Augustin, and Jonah Jim (islanders of Umboi Island, Papua New Guinea).

The ropen lights have been compared with the Marfa Lights of Texas.

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