Shortfrilled ceratopsians

The group of ceratopsians with short frills also had long nose horns and short brow horns. Styracosaurus had the most dramatic frill, with long horns growing out from its edge. The discovery of five young near an adult Brachyceratops indicates that these ceratopsians looked after their young. It is likely that when a herd was in danger from predators, the males protected the young and the females.

Styracosaurus

Six long spikes edged the frill of Styracosaurus. It had a lethal horn on its nose that was 2 ft (60 cm) long and 6 in (15 cm) thick. The horns above the eyes, however, were only stumps. It was possibly a good runner, capable of speeds of up to 20 mph (32 km/h).

Nasal Horn Fossils
Long nose horn

Horns on edge oo frill

Horns on edge oo frill

Ceratopsian Dinosaurs
Jm

Bony hook

Fossil beak Ceratopsian dinosaurs had beaks that were ideal for slicing through twigs and tough plants. Each beak had a horny covering grooves and pits on

Horny covering was attached to

Bony hook

Horny covering was attached to

Stumps along edge of frill

Nasal Horn Fossils

Stumps along edge of frill

Centrosaurus The horn on the nose of Centrosaurus curved forward rather than backward like most other ceratopsians. The short frill had small stumps along the edge, as well as a pair of long central hooks which projected forward.

Ceratopsian Beak

A rhinocerous has two horns on

Similar bodies Rhinoceroses resemble ceratopsians with their stocky bodies and facial horns. A charging rhinoceros reaches speeds of up to 28 mph (45 km/h), and it is thought that ceratopsians such as Centrosaurus could run at least as fast.

Long-frilled ceratopsians

The frill of long-frilled ceratopsians extended back to, or over, the shoulders. Sometimes the bony frill was armed with short spikes, and there were often holes in the frill to lighten the load. The snout had a short horn, and there were long brow horns - the opposite of the short-frilled ceratopsians.

Brow horn

Brow horn

Sharp teeth cut up leaves

Horn was made of solid bone

Horn was made of solid bone

Fossil horn This fossil is the core of the brow horn of Triceratops. In life it would have been sheathed in horn.

Ideal skull Triceratops had a solid bony frill, a short nose horn, and two 3-ft long (1 m) brow horns. The parrotlike beak and scissorlike teeth were ideal for Triceratops' vegetarian diet.

Beak was used to crop vegetation

Sharp teeth cut up leaves

Cretaceous Jurassic Triassic Timeline
Two large holes in the frill bone reduced its weight.

Beak was used to crop vegetation

Torosaurus

The skull of Torosaurus, from the tip of the snout to the back of the frill, was 8/4 ft (2.6 m) long - about the size of a small car. Torosaurus' head was bigger than that of any other known land animal.

Chasmosaurus The earliest long-frilled ceratopsian was Chasmosaurus. To lighten its weight, the frill had two large holes which were probably filled with muscle. Its skeleton was solidly built to bear its 2-ton (tonne) weight, and was not designed for speed. As with most ceratopsians, Chasmosaurus probably had few predators and used its horns mostly in territorial disputes.

In life, hole in frill was covered with skin

Edge of frill had small horns

In life, hole in frill was covered with skin

Edge of frill had small horns

Dinosaur Anatomy

Chasmosaurus skeleton

Chasmosaurus skeleton

Dinosaur Anatomy

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