Giant Meat-Eating Dinosaur Which Lived 145 Million Years Ago Discovered in Thailand
Image for representation | (Credit: AFP)
A new species of predatory dinosaur that was four times bigger than a velociraptor and lived around 145 million years ago has been unearthed in Thailand.
The 26 feet long dinosaur is an early member of a widespread group of dinosaurs called Carcharodontosaurids. Carcharodontosaurids included some of the largest land predators ever known: Giganotosaurus, Mapusaurus, Carcharodontosaurus, and Tyrannotitan.
The findings were published in the scientific journal PLOS One.
The remains included skull, backbone and hip fossils that came from belonged to four individuals of the new species, dubbed Siamraptor suwati.
The fossilised remains were found in the Thai province of Nakhon Ratchasima and were analysed by Palaeontologists Duangsuda Chokchaloemwong of the Nakhon Ratchasima Rajabhat University.
According to researchers, the dinosaur skeleton is dated back to the Early Cretaceous period, which lasted from 146–100 million years ago.
The team was able to identify fossilised bones of the skull, backbone, hips and limbs believed to belong to four individuals.
Comparison to fossils of known dinosaurs allowed the researchers to identify the remains as belonging to a previously-unknown species of carcharodontosaurian.
The team have named the new species Siamraptor suwati, in honour of both Thailand and Suwat Liptapanlop, a benefactor of the research.
According to researchers the dinosaur evolved and diverged from the other members of the carcharodontosaur group early in their history.
Notably, the Siamraptor suwati is also the first definitive archarodontosaurian fossil found in Southeast Asia, with earlier remains being unearthed in Europe and Africa.