Dinosaurs: Triceratops


Triceratops (Three-Horned Face)

Triceratops was a large plant-eating dinosaur of the late Cretaceous. Triceratops grew to about 30 feet (9 m) in length and weighed about 12 tons.

It had a huge frill with 2 large horns, 1 over each of its eyes, and a smaller horn at the end of its nose. These horns would have helped defend Triceratops against predators of that time such as Tyrannosaurus. A number of skeletons show bite marks that match the teeth of Tyrannosaurus.

Triceratops is probably the most famous of a large group of horned dinosaurs called Ceratopsians. Other Ceratopsians included Chasmosaurus, Protoceratops and Styracosaurus.  Like all other Ceratopsians Triceratops had a massive hooked beak armed with shearing teeth.

Fossil evidence suggest that Triceratops and other ceratopsians may have travelled in large single species herds, similar to that of modern day herding mammals such as Wildebeest.



triceratops size

Pronounced: try-SER-a-tops

Name Means: "Three-Horn Face"
Length: 30 feet (9 m)
Height: 8 feet (2.7 m)
Weight: 7 tons (12,000 kg)
Diet: Herbivore (Low-lying Plants)
Time: Late Cretaceous - 65 million years ago
Habitat: Forests
Fossils Found: Canada, Western North America


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