Triceratops

Triceratops (Pronounced: Try-serra-tops)

Triceratops means “Three Horned Head” – a name this dinosaur got thanks to it having three horns on its head. One of the most famous and well-known of all dinosaurs today, Triceratops lived around 65 million years ago, right up until the end of the age of the dinosaurs.

Although Triceratops looked fierce, with its three pointed horns, they were actually harmless giants that if left alone would happily spend their time ripping off and munching on plant leaves.

That said, they were big and strong enough to stand their ground against most predators, including most large meat-eating predators.

As an herbivore – or plant-eater – Triceratops had no interest in devouring other dinosaurs. Its huge horns were merely defensive, coming in handy to fend-off and discourage meat-eating carnivorous dinosaurs like Tyrannosaurus Rex.

Triceratops herds may have used defensive tactics that were similar to modern-day army manoeuvres to scare off predators, such as forming a circle with their horns outward to fend-off predators. It is also likely that they fought each for mates, as is seen in many modern animals, using their horns to battle other Triceratops.

Other features of this dinosaur were a powerful beak that it used to crush food, a powerful jaw which like other horned dinosaurs were anchored to a large ridge that ran around the back of its skull, as well as a distinct, solid bone neck frill.

Triceratops Facts

How long was Triceratops?
30 ft (9 m)

How heavy was Triceratops?
25,000 lbs (12,000 kg)

What family of dinosaur does Triceratops belong to?
Ceratopsia

What did Triceratops eat?
Plants

How long ago did Triceratops live?
65 million years ago

In what period did Triceratops live?
Late Cretaceous

Where did Triceratops live?
North America

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