Dino bones site eyed as tourist spot
KHON KAEN: Local residents and experts have agreed to push the government to develop a site in Mancha Khiri into a tourism attraction after dinosaur bones were dug up 10 years ago.
Geological experts from Kalasin and Khon Kaen University met with locals at Wat Suan Pa Sai Chon in Mancha Khiri district yesterday to discuss the proposed development of the tourist site.
The meeting followed a complaint by Nan Promrin, 52, on whose land in tambon Phon Pek the dinosaur bones were discovered a decade ago.
The bones were confirmed by experts at the Sirindhorn Museum in Kalasin to belong to three species of dinosaur, one of them a large, plant-eating Sauropod.
The bones are believed to be at least 100 million years old, according to Sa-orn Kansupa, a geologist at the museum.
Among the finds were teeth, vertebrae and thigh bones. The experts said, comparing the Mancha Khiri bones with those found in nearby provinces including Chaiyaphum to see if they came from dinosaurs of similar species which roamed the earth around the same time.
At yesterday's meeting, Prapas Pornchalermkiat, 48, a local resident, said the locals did not understand why the bones had been taken from the tambon but were never returned to the landowner.
The experts, however, explained that the bones were being examined for research purposes and are regarded by law as protected items of paleontology. Only replicas are able to be returned.
The residents were told that after the research is concluded, the real bones will be kept at Sirindhorn Museum.
Sanit Aksornkaew, chairman of the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Council, said the site can also become a field research location.