(CNN)A newly identified dinosaur was about the size of a chicken, sported an impressive mane and had stiff, ribbon-like structures protruding from its shoulders.
The unusual fossil was found in Brazil and is the first of its type from South America to show evidence of feathers. The authors of the study think that the elaborate plumage would have been used for display and implied the dinosaur had sophisticated mating behavior.
"If confirmed, this find will be a significant discovery for two reasons: the first feathered dinosaur from southern continents and a bizarre display structure in a dinosaur from a relatively early lineage," said Xu Xing, a paleontologist at the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology in Beijing, said via email.
"Similar structures have been previously reported from some very bird-like dinosaurs, but in those cases, the ribbon-like structures are attached to the tail, which is the normal, but in this new find, they are attached to the shoulder, which is unusual," added Xu, who wasn't involved in the research. He discovered some of the first feathered dinosaur fossils in China.
The animal would have lived around 110 million years ago.
A few birds today do have "decorated shoulders," including the male standardwing bird-of-paradise, but they are rare, said David Martill, a professor at the University of Portsmouth in the UK and an author of the paper.
"We cannot prove that the specimen is a male, but given the disparity between male and female birds, it appears likely the specimen was a male, and