Newly Discovered Dinosaur Was a Giant ‘Shark Tooth’ Carnivore
by Riley Black Smithsonian.com
Tyrannosaurs are often seen as the kings of the prehistoric world. They’re among the largest and most charismatic of giant predators to stalk the Earth during the age of dinosaurs. But they weren’t the only voracious giants of the time. The “shark tooth lizards,” known to paleontologists as carcharodontosaurs, ruled all over the planet for tens of millions of years before and during the rise of tyrannosaurs, and a new find in southeast Asia helps fill in the backstory of these impressive carnivores.
A new species named Siamraptor suwati was found in the Early Cretaceous rock outcrops of Thailand. Dinosaurs can be difficult to find among the Mesozoic rocks of southeast Asia. Rock layers of the right age and type to find dinosaur bones are less abundant in this part of the world than places like the western United States or China, and those that do exist are often covered by thick forest. Yet, as reported today by Nakhon Ratchasima Rajabhat University paleontologist Duangsuda Chokchaloemwong and colleagues in the journal PLOS ONE, the bones of Siamraptor were found in 115-million-year-old rocks near the Thai district of Ban Saphan.