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Diet: Triceratops was an herbivore, a plant eater (a primary consumer). It probably ate cycads, palms, and other low-lying plants with its tough, toothless beak. Triceratops could chew well with its cheek teeth (like other ceratopsians, but unlike most other dinosaurs).
Anatomy: Triceratops had three horns on its face along with a large bony plate projecting from the back of its skull (called a frill). One short horn above its parrot-like beak and two longer horns (over 3 feet or 1 m long) above its eyes probably provided protection from predators. The horns were possibly used in mating rivalry and rituals. Triceratops had a large skull, up to 10 feet (3 m) long. This dinosaur was up to 25 feet (8 m) long and was about 15 to 20 feet (4.6 to 6 m) tall; it weighed roughly 5 to 7 tons. A quadruped, Triceratops walked on four short, sturdy legs.
Fossils: Many Triceratops fossils have been found, mostly in western Canada and the western United States. Paleontologist Othniel Marsh named Triceratops from a fossil found near Denver, Colorado, USA, in 1889. At first this fossil was mistakenly identified as an extinct species of buffalo. The first Triceratops skull was found in 1888 by John Bell Hatcher. About 50 Triceratops skulls and some partial skeletons have been found.
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