In 2020 paleontologists David Martill and colleagues named a new genus and species of tapejarid pterosaur, Afrotapejara zouhri, from the Kem Kem Group of Morocco. The species is known from three fragmentary rostra, and a partial mandibular symphysis. The genus name combines Africa with Tapejara, the first known tapejarid, and species name honors Moroccan paleontologist Samir Zouhri.
The holotype specimen of Afrotapejara is a partial rostrum, about 15 cm (6 inches) long. The rostrum is long and tapers to a point. The broken base of a sagittal crest can be seen on the upper surface near the rear end of the fragment. The fragment is toothless, and the end of the rostrum appears to be deflected downward. The two other rostral fragments are similar to the holotype, but preserve smaller parts of the beak, noticeably missing any portion of the crest. The mandible referred to the species is also toothless, and preserves a deep crest below the mandibular symphysis.
Nothing else is known from the skull or skeleton of Afrotapejara, but comparison to other tapejarids suggests a skull length of about 40-50 cm (16-20 inches), and a wingspan from 3.5-5.0 m (11.5-16.5 feet). Tapejarids generally have large fan-shaped sagittal crests formed by soft tissues spanning two bony bases, one on the snout, and another at the rear of the skull, as well as a deep crest on the chin.
Tapejarids are thought to have been fruit eaters, first emerging at about the same time as flowering plants, in the Early Cretaceous. They’re part of a larger lineage, the azhdarchoids, that includes a large number of terrestrial-adapted carnivores like the azhdarchids and chaoyangopterids.
Afrotapejara lived about 95 million years ago, at the beginning of the Early Cretaceous. Its remains were found in rocks laid down in a tropical delta environment. It lived alongside several other pterosaurs such as the probable chaoyangopterid Apatorhamphus, the azhdarchids Xericeps and Alanqa, and the ornithocheirds Sirrocopteryx, Coloborhynchus, Ornithocheirus, and Anhanguera. It also lived alongside several large theropod dinosaurs such as Carcharodontosaurus and Spinosaurus, and the unusual sauropod Rebbachisaurus.