This scratching image of a cat - or a feline figure - came across researchers in southern Peru.
Photo: Jhony Islas / AP
The giant cat almost looks like it's ready to jump.
It shines in the gray-brown sand and in the heat of the Peruvian south, on the slope of a desert hill.
Not real, just a scratch - that could have been made between 200 and 100 BC, as the British "Guardian" reports.
The geoglyphs of Nazca are among the most impressive legacies that any civilization has ever created.
More than 1500 scratches are carved into the desert soil in the south of Peru on an area of 500 square kilometers, they are assigned to the Paracas and Nazca cultures.
Some of the lines are up to 20 kilometers long.
Geographical shapes such as triangles can be recognized from the air or from some hills in the region, but also images of people and animals.
As the "Guardian" reports, researchers discovered the cat-like figure with its head pointing forward while working on the hill.
"The figure was barely visible and was about to disappear because it is on a rather steep slope that is prone to the effects of natural erosion," the Guardian quoted from a statement by the Peruvian Minister of Education.
The figure is 37 meters long and has clearly defined lines between 30 and 40 centimeters wide.
Only two years ago, researchers using drone and satellite technology documented around 50 new formations very close to Nazca.
The researchers were able to assign some of the lines to the Nazca culture; they are said to have originated between 200 and 700 AD.
But most of the lines found appeared to be older.
The researchers assigned them to the early Paracas and Topará cultures between 500 BC and 200 AD.
The Topará is considered to be a transition culture between Paracas and Nazca.
The researchers wrote at the time that people in the region had already experimented with the production of massive geoglyphs centuries before the formation of the Nazca Lines.
The Nazca images were created by removing the upper layers of rock, which reveals the lighter layer of sediment underneath.
They were discovered in the 1920s when commercial flights regularly crossed the Nazca Desert.
The purpose of the lines has not yet been fully clarified, but many researchers assume that the symbols are in the context of fertility rituals.
In addition, numerous remains of settlements with burials and well-preserved mummies were found in the region.
Icon: The mirror