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UF study advances 'DNA revolution,' tells butterflies' evolutionary history
Date:7/31/2014

sed as moths and found to be true butterflies.

The tree also provides a baseline to test whether diurnal, or daytime, activity, a common butterfly trait, evolved much earlier than scientists previously believed, possibly at a time when bats' spread across the planet, as a means of escaping these and other nocturnal predators, Kawahara said.

Future research will investigate the causes of evolutionary transitions, such as diurnal activity, across Lepidoptera. Breinholt said although the new tree clarifies our understanding of butterfly and moth relationships, many lineages still need to be examined.

"I hope this is a starting point for larger studies that account for the great diversity of Lepidoptera," Breinholt said.


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Contact: Akito Kawahara
kawahara@flmnh.ufl.edu
352-273-2018
University of Florida
Source:Eurekalert  

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