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Butterfly tree of life reveals an origin in North America
by Florida Museum of Natural History
Phys.org Translate This Article
16 May 2023
On 16 May 2023 Phys.org reported:
About 100 million years ago, a group of trendsetting moths started flying during the day rather than at night, taking advantage of nectar-rich flowers that had co-evolved with bees. This single event led to the evolution of all butterflies. About 100 million years ago, a group of trendsetting moths started flying during the day rather than at night, taking advantage of nectar-rich flowers that had co-evolved with bees. This single event led to the evolution of all butterflies.
Global Good News service views this news as a sign of rising positivity in the field of science, documenting the growth of life-supporting, evolutionary trends.
Now, scientists have discovered where the first butterflies originated and which plants they relied on for food.
Before reaching these conclusions, researchers from dozens of countries had to create the world's largest butterfly tree of life, assembled with DNA from more than 2,000 species representing all butterfly families and 92 percent of genera. Using this framework as a guide, they traced the movements and feeding habits of butterflies through time in a four-dimensional puzzle that led back to North and Central America. According to their results, published May 15 in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution, this is where the first butterflies took flight.
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