Scientists believe that Triceratops used it’s three horns to protect itself from predators, like the Tyrannosaurus Rex. Triceratops probably charged into its enemy with these horns like rhinoceros do today. Triceratops had one of the largest skulls of any land animal ever discovered, reaching lengths of over 7 feet long and weighing more than 3 tons! It is believed that Triceratops was a herding animal, as remains have been discovered in bone beds–large deposits of bones of the same species in one area.
Scientists have differing theories on the purpose of the neck frill of the Triceratops. Some think the frill was used to protect the neck area, while others think the frill may have been important in helping male Triceratops attract females or distract potential male rivals for a female's attention. Another possible explanation for the frill is heat regulation. As the Triceratops' body warmed up, heat escaped from the frill and the body temperature returned to normal.
FACTS & STATS:
HOW TO SAY IT: try-SAIR-uh-tops
LENGTH: 30 ft (9 m)
HEIGHT: 7 - 10 ft (2 - 3 m)
WEIGHT: 6 - 12 tons
PERIOD: Late Cretaceous Period (68-65 MYA)
DIET: Herbivore, plant eater
WHERE FOUND: Western North America (Wyoming and Montana, Saskatchewan and Alberta in Canada)
Image Description: The two horns above the eye sockets on the Triceratops were up to 3 feet long. The horns were sharp and covered with a thick coat of the same stuff your fingernails are made of, called keratin, which made them strong. These horns would have come in handy in a fight with a Tyrannosaurus rex!