Triceratops Bone, from Hell Creek Formation, Eastern Montana, USA (No.79)

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Triceratops Bone, from Hell Creek Formation, Eastern Montana, USA (No.79)Triceratops Bone, from Hell Creek Formation, Eastern Montana, USA
Late Cretaceous Period, 67 Million Years

Measurements Approx.
Height - 2.5 cm
Width - 4.1 cm
Length - 5.6 cm

The largest of the ceratopsians or horned dinosaurs is the well know Triceratops (meaning three-horned face). Roaming North America in the Late Cretaceous Period 70-65 million years ago. Triceratops could grow up to 30ft long nose to tail, 9.5 ft high and weigh as much as 10 tonnes. The most distinctive feature is their large skull, which had three horns, one on the snout and two above the eyes. These horns could have been used as a form of self defence against attacks from predator, such as T.Rex. It has also been seen from puncture marks on fossil frills that male Triceratops used the horns to fight each other, probably to compete for a female. The frill could of also have been used in courtship or social behaviour. 


It may have also been used to regulate body temperature, a theory that has been suggested about the plates on a Stegosaurs too but is not so widely recognised and agreed. 

First named in 1889 by Othniel Charles Marsh, an American palaeontologist, Triceratops was a herbivorous Dinosaur but unlike other herbivore Dinosaurs which would move in herds, as a form of protection against predators, much as modern animals will do today, Triceratops remains have been found individually, suggesting they might have spent much of their lives alone.

From its rivalry with the Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops has a reputation as great as itís predator, both among the last great Dinosaurs.