Creature information
Scientific name : Triceratops horridus
Time period : Late Cretaceous
Primary diet : Herbivore
In the documentary
Triceratops is a large ceratopsian dinosaur, and one of the last non-avian dinosaurs to have ever existed. Triceratops was about 3 meters (10 feet) tall, 10 meters (33 feet) long, weighed as much as 7 tons, and had a skull up to 3 meters (10 ft) in length making it one of the biggest, if not the biggest of all the horned dinosaurs. They are thought to have been browsers, as they had shearing teeth to slice through vegetation and feed on low shrubs. A fully grown Triceratops was far from defenseless because of its impressive size, thick hide, and, unlike many of its relatives, Triceratops lacked the two holes covered with skin on its bony frill, allowing it to use it as a shield to its neck as well as using it for display. According to some palaeontologists, it may have been the juvenile form of a different ceratopsid dinosaur, Torosaurus, though many think this is quite unlikely. Triceratops was one of the last dinosaurs to go extinct at the end of the Cretaceous Period 65,000,000 MYA.

In When Dinosaurs Roamed America

A herd mixed with TriceratopsEdmontosaurus, and Ornithomimus are seen grazing in the fern plain. A young male T. rex charges out of the forest in an ambush, prompting the Triceratops herd to assume a defensive position by surrounding the baby Triceratops in an impenetrable circular position. The Tyrannosaurus backs off in response and decides to instead chase a Quetzalcoatlus who was feeding on a dead Triceratops, but the pterosaur escapes, and so the tyrant prince retreats back into the forest. Later, multiple Triceratops were seen running from the meteor shower that the asteroid impact unleashed upon their world, and are shown to have gone extinct alongside all other dinosaurs, with the exception of birds.

Scientific Inaccuracies

  • Triceratops may have had feather-like quills on its back, something the When Dinosaurs Roamed America Triceratops doesn’t have. It should be noted however that this theory was proposed long after the documentary’s debut, and it is only a theory in any case.
  • Triceratops may have possessed a keratin covering over its skull in life, which could potentially have caused the horns to appear even larger and differently shaped than the animal is generally depicted.


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