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Groundbreaking Discovery in Kalasin: Wongwech Chowchuvech Unearths First Basal Tyrannosauroid Teeth in Southeast Asia

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Imagine unearthing a hidden treasure from millions of years ago—a secret so tightly held by the earth that its discovery sends ripples of excitement across the scientific community. That’s exactly what happened recently in the northeastern province of Kalasin in Thailand! Fossilised teeth of a Basal Tyrannosauroid were discovered by a dedicated researcher from Kasetsart University, making history as Southeast Asia’s first such find.

The intrepid explorer behind this groundbreaking discovery is Wongwech Chowchuvech, a graduate student from the Department of Earth Sciences under the Faculty of Science at Kasetsart University. This remarkable find was made under the careful supervision of a stellar team: Assistant Professor Chatchalerm Ketwetsuriya of Kasetsart University, Sita Manitkoon from Mahasarakham University, and Phornphen Chanthasit, the esteemed director of the Sirindhorn Museum.

Now, let’s dive into the juicy details of this paleontological revelation. When the team scrutinized the fossilised teeth, their analysis revealed something extraordinary. These ancient chompers belonged to a Basal Tyrannosauroid, a prehistoric relative of the ferocious Tyrannosaurus Rex. Unlike the previously discovered Metriacanthosauridae teeth found in the same area, these had some distinctive traits that made them stand out.

According to the research team, the Basal Tyrannosauroid teeth exhibited two unique dental features: lateral teeth with mesiolingual twisted mesial carinae extending above the cervix line and an intricately braided enamel surface texture. If dental jargon isn’t your thing, just picture a tiny, sharp tooth with a complex pattern akin to a warrior’s intricate armor—a testament to nature’s meticulous craftsmanship.

The Basal Tyrannosauroid teeth from Phu Noi provide a fascinating link to the Jurassic period, showing close relations to dinosaurs like the Guanlong wucaii and the Proceratosaurus bradleyi. These prehistoric creatures roamed the earth during a time when today’s bustling Kalasin was a lush and vibrant landscape teeming with life. Just imagine the rich paleoecological environment of the lower Phu Kradung area teeming with an array of ancient flora and fauna—it’s like stepping right into a scene from Jurassic Park!

This discovery isn’t merely a feather in the cap for the researchers but marks a significant milestone in understanding the distribution of ancient creatures in what is now Southeast Asia. It’s a vivid reminder of our planet’s dynamic history and a big win for paleontology in this corner of the world. An event like this not only enriches our scientific knowledge but also sparks curiosity and wonder about the ancient world buried beneath our feet.

So, next time you think of Kalasin, don’t just envision a serene northeastern province of Thailand. Picture a hidden vault of ancient secrets waiting to be untangled by the ingenious minds at Kasetsart University and other dedicated researchers. Who knows what other prehistoric marvels lie hidden, waiting for the right moment to come to light and enchant us all?

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