from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The hypothetical precursors of bird feathers, believed to have been grown by certain dinosaurs.
The researchers screened over 4,000 ancient amber specimens collected near Grassy Lake, Alberta, and found eleven feather or protofeather specimens.
The researchers can't tell the age of the samples directly, but the earliest appears to be a stage I protofeather which contains "a dense forest of regularly spaces, flexible filaments."
We actually have the actual object.… we actually have this protofeather for the first time in the flesh.