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Butterflies probably first evolved about 150 million years ago, appearing at about the same time as the flowering (or angiosperm) plants. Of the 220,000 species of Lepidoptera, about 45,000 species are butterflies, which probably evolved from moths. Butterflies are found throughout the world, except in Antarctica, and are especially numerous in the tropics. They fall into eight families: Papilionidae (swallowtail butterflies), Pieridae (whites), Danaidae (milkweeds), Satyridae (browns), Morphidae (morphos), Nymphalidae (nymphalids), Lycaenidae (blues), and Hesperidae (skippers).

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Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Boolean algebra to Calcium PropionateButterflies - Evolution, Development And Life Cycle, The Egg, The Caterpillar, The Chrysalis, The Adult (or Imago)