Wednesday, 20 January 2010


A few years ago I bought a huge collection of Triceratops horridus teeth from a guy in Montana. Because I got so many at once, the price was really good and I've had them on sale in the shop since for £4.50 and £7. Pretty good. They've gone steadily enough, but they are outsold by the Spinosaurus teeth by a huge margin.

Everyone loves dinosaurs and Triceratops is one of the best known - so why don't the teeth sell as well? Mainly, I think it's because they aren't very tooth-like. The Spino teeth are long and pointed, and you can imagine the Spino biting through your arm and waving it around in its mouth spraying blood everywhere. Trikes were huge animals, up to 9m in length and maybe 12 metric tons in weight, but they had tiny little stumps for teeth.

They were herbivores and cropped vegetation with their beak before chewing it with four batteries of small teeth at the back of their mouth. In each of these chewing plates, there would be between 108-200 teeth, depending on the age of the individual. So a fully grown animal might have 800 little teeth at any one time. Continuous growth meant worn teeth were replaced - for every one animal there would have been an awful lot of teeth produced over a lifetime.

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