Definition of patagium in English:


nounPlural patagia

  • 1A membrane or fold of skin between the forelimbs and hindlimbs on each side of a bat or gliding mammal.

    • ‘They glide, by taking off from a high perch, spreading a special membrane called a patagium, which resembles a bat wing, and soaring up to 150 feet to another tree.’
    • ‘Impressions of the wing patagium of the Late Jurassic pterosaur Sordes pilosus clearly show the membrane connected to the hindlimb all the way to ankle and a well developed cruropatagium stretched between the hindlimbs.’
    • ‘The best preserved impressions of patagium in Pterodactylus show the membrane connected to the thigh about two-thirds of the distance along the femur.’
    • ‘Note that whereas the forearm bones and carpometcarpus join at a slight angle, the patagium normally maintains the straight leading edge of the wing; hence, one should avoid pressing inward while tracing that edge to avoid distortion.’
    • ‘For this study, only the left patagium was used, because this decreases the handling time and the probability of error compared with that of the injection and measurement of both the left and right side.’
    • ‘The patagium extends all the way around to the bat's hind legs and tail, where it forms a flap called the uropatagium, supported by specialized foot bones called calcars.’
    1. 1.1Entomology A lobe that covers the wing joint in many moths.


Early 19th century: from Latin, denoting gold edging on a Roman lady's tunic, from Greek patageion.