Imagine a giant, three-horned herbivore with a bony frill – that's the magnificent Triceratops! These impressive dinosaurs roamed the Earth during the Late Cretaceous period, around 65-68 million years ago, making them one of the last known non-avian dinosaurs. Their name, Triceratops, comes from Greek words meaning "three-horned face," perfectly capturing their most striking feature.

These horns were likely used for defense against predators like Tyrannosaurus Rex. The bony frill around their neck may have served multiple purposes. It could have protected their neck from bites, helped regulate their body temperature, or even been used for display during mating rituals. Triceratops also had a beak at the front of their mouth for munching on tough plants, and rows of grinding teeth to process their food.

Fully grown Triceratops were truly massive creatures. They could reach up to 30 feet (9 meters) in length and weigh close to 12 tons (11,000 kilograms), about the weight of several elephants combined! Despite their size and horns, Triceratops were actually herbivores, meaning they ate plants. They likely grazed in herds, using their powerful beaks to clip leaves and branches from trees and shrubs.

Sadly, the reign of the Triceratops ended alongside many other dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous period in a mass extinction event. However, these fascinating creatures left behind a legacy of fossils that continue to amaze scientists and spark our imaginations today. Triceratops skulls and skeletons are some of the most recognizable dinosaur fossils ever found, offering valuable clues about their anatomy, behavior, and the lost world they inhabited.